Jean Pettaway

Tarboro- When Hurricane Floyd hit Jean Pettaway’s home in 1999, she thought it couldn’t get worse.

“The whole house was covered with water,” Pettaway described. “It was over the roof.”

Less than two decades later Pettway faced the unthinkable, not one, but two hurricanes that brought historic flooding to the area.

“I couldn’t believe it,” Pettaway said. “All I could think was, ‘Here we go again.’”

Pettaway moved out of the flood zone and into another Tarboro neighborhood. Even though she was safe, she couldn’t sell her storm-damaged home and was left paying two mortgages.

“When you’re paying two mortgages and your income has stopped, it’s hard,” Pettaway said.

Pettaway thought she was out of options until she read a news article about NCORR’s Strategic Buyout Program. She decided to attend one of the public information sessions.

Helping Families Move Forward

“When they talked about a buyout, I knew that was what I needed,” Pettaway said. “I couldn’t rebuild. My home was in a flood zone. This meant I could finally sell my home.” 

Pettaway applied for the program and closed on her property in December 2024.

“I only have one mortgage now,” Pettaway said. “I can enjoy where I’m at. I love my neighborhood. I love that I’m not in a flood zone. I’m just grateful. I worked with a lot of nice people in the program. I hope that anyone who is thinking of applying does because it’s worth it!”

To learn more about the Strategic Buyout Program and see if your property is eligible, visit