Two hurricanes, two trees: Family looks to renovate home again after Florence

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A New Hanover County family is now facing their second big home renovation in the last two years.

Sam Steger and his wife, Alexis, avoided danger in 2016 when a tree came crashing through their home off Castle Hayne Road. The family persevered and stayed in an apartment while repairs were made to the house. Now, thanks to Hurricane Florence, more work is needed on the home.

 “There’s a tree in our house. It’s in our living room!” said a light-hearted Steger after the tree fell in 2016.

During Matthew, Steger stayed in the house with his pregnant wife. Thankfully, neither of them were hurt when the tree fell. However, because of that situation, the couple decided they would pack up their two children and stay with family during Hurricane Florence.

“As soon as we saw the storm like days out, we were like we’re definitely not gonna be here,” explained Steger in an interview Thursday.

To his dismay, the family discovered their home had not been spared from the wrath of Florence. A second tree had fallen and struck their roof. This caused the ceiling to warp and water to leak into the house.

“You know they say lightning doesn’t strike twice in the same place, but trees definitely do. They’ll strike in the same exact location on your house,” said Steger jokingly.

He said the Matthew tree ended up keeping his family out of their house for eight months. They had only been back living in the home a year when Florence brought the second tree down and ruined the renovations they had made.

“Our house ended up being better because of all the work we had to do, but now we’re gonna have to do it again,” explained Steger.

While the family is faced with replacing their ceiling and floors yet again, Steger continues to maintain a positive attitude.

“I see so many people that lost everything and I mean we lost our ceiling and our floors and our kitchen table. We’ve been so fortunate,” said Steger. “(We) just have to keep a positive attitude about it and move on.”

He said the family is seriously looking to move from the home now. He said they will also leave the coast the next a big storm is forecasted for the area.

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