‘One step at a time,’ people rebuilding one year after Matthew

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – It’s been almost a year since Hurricane Matthew hit the east coast and people around the Carolinas are in different stages of recovery.

“It’s just hard to see your house gone,” said Brian Brown after the storm hit. He lives off Rosewood Drive and watched as water crept closer to his front door. After the waterway crested, Brown had about two feet of water in his house.

“It’s never gotten up this high in 23 years,” he added.

News13 followed up with Brown in December 2016 when contractors were working to install new walls, floors, and cabinets.

“Right now what I’m trying to do is just get my house back together again,” said Brown, who struggled to find reliable contractors. “Just one step at a time.”

Brown said he encourages everyone to really do their homework when choosing a contractor. “Ask the questions, because, if not, you’re going to get ripped off,” he urged

Which is exactly what Brown says happened to him.

“Once he started working and he started getting money, he stopped showing up, stopped doing the work he was doing,” said Brown about one of the contractors who worked on his house.

Almost a year later, Brown and his wife are slowly getting back to normal.

“At a year right now we’re to the point where we’ve almost got it one hundred percent complete,” he added. “Now it’s time for the little touches.”

Brown said if his home floods again he plans to build a second story and put the house on stilts.

“It went from a home to a house back to home. So it’s home now,” he smiled.