Family turns garage into makeshift home after Hurricane Harvey flooding

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Instead of relocating after their home flooded during Harvey, one southwest Houston couple put their do-it-yourself skills to the test to make their garage a home for their four children.

Jennifer and David Rupe's home near Brays Bayou took on three feet of water. They and their four children under 9 years old had to leave their neighborhood by boat. When they were able to return, they didn't focus on their one-story, three-bedroom house off the street. Instead, they upgraded and re-mediated their garage apartment.

"First thing we did was work on this to get it ready," said David Rupe, referring to the garage.

With help from David's brothers, father and a friend, they transformed where they used to park their cars into bedrooms and a bathroom. Upstairs, they added a full kitchen and now it's home.

"I think it's pretty amazing to just have the idea to make a home versus being in between houses and relying on friends," added Jennifer.

The Rupes said for them and their children, this is more cost-effective and comfortable, allowing them to maintain some normalcy. They will eventually make a decision about their main house, one that has flooded twice in the last year and a half.

"We decided already we're not going to fix it. We're going to raze it or raise it. We're going to knock it down and build new or lift it up," David told Eyewitness News.

Until then, it's working for them and their young children.

"They're pretty resilient, I would say," he added.

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