"If I put $200,000, if I was able to find the money to build, I would put that into the house, plus what I owe on the property and I would never have any equity," Segarra said.
That's where Mike Berloco's home came into the picture.
The home was seriously damaged in the storm, but instead of knocking it down as Berloco planned to do to, Segarra offered to buy it for the bargain price of $1.
"When Chris called meet up at first, I thought he was nuts," Berloco said.
But Berloco mulled it over and figured it was a win-win: he didn't have to pay to demolish the bungalow and cart away the debris and Segarra got himself a house.
"Instead of seeing it go into a dumpster, I thought this was a nice way to still be able to drive around and see it in the neighborhood and Chris will benefit from it," Berloco said.
Chris is paying to repair the house, clear Berloco's lot, and move the home to his property where he's raising it up 12 feet on pilings.
It's smaller than Segarra's house that was destroyed, but way better than living on a boat with a coffeemaker and a cooler or crashing with family and friends, as he's had to do over the last year.
When Sandy flooded his neighborhood, Segarra used a row boat to rescue several people despite the danger. His dad Frank hopes having a home again will save his son.
"I hope the good Lord helps him out. That's all we wish for, that he makes it. He's a hard worker. He deserves a break," Frank Segarra said.
New digs for a dollar? It's one wacky real estate deal, but, happily, Mike Berloco was willing.
"I can't thank him enough. It's an awesome deal," Berloco said.