"Merry Christmas" will be quickly followed by a harsh financial reality for hundreds of people living in FEMA temporary housing units.
The government-supplied housing that has been free of charge for those who were displaced following the Mouse River flood becomes pretty costly as of January First.
Rent -- nearly one thousand dollars a month for some -- begins in the new year, and as Perry Olson shows us, it is a problem for those working to get back to their home after the flood.
This 100 plus year old home has been in Arland Welsh's family for more than a century...and he's lived here for decades...
(Arland Welsh - Minot) "It was my grandparent's home...I moved in when I was 16..."
But the flood kicked him out...into a life full of questions. The latest: How to afford the rent that is about to kick in from FEMA for this unit he has called home for 53 weeks. It's a three bedroom -- more than enough room for him...in fact, more than he requested.
(Arland Welsh - Minot) "When I put in for a FEMA trailer...I said one or two bedroom would be hunky dory. Then when they did finally call me this is what I got. I thought at the time it was a bit of an excess."
But needing anything...he took it. In a few weeks...living here will run him about a thousand dollars a month.
(Arland Welsh - Minot) "Not everyone is like Diamond Jim Brady or Donald Trump. Especially the elderly or low income. If you have to spend over 50 percent of your monthly income on housing, it doesn't leave much for anything else."
And that is his situation. He is working through the FEMA appeal process...hoping that a reduction can be agreed upon, but that too has been frustrating
(Arland Welsh - Minot) "They are in the process of doing that right now. I put in an appeal for that...but you know how FEMA is...anytime you deal with government...I might get it by the time I retire, if I live that long."
He hopes to one day come back to this family home -- rebuilt after the flood -- but getting to that point is about to get even more costly very soon. In Minot, Perry Olson, KX News.