TOMS RIVER - (AP) - Federal authorities have been issuing a sobering warning to thousands of homeowners still struggling to recover from Superstorm Sandy: Raise your homes above the flood plain or face soaring insurance costs.

For many residents in coastal New York and New Jersey, that's an impossible choice, because they can't afford to do either.

Raising even a small cottage up on stilts can cost $60,000. Elevating a big, multilevel home could cost $250,000.

But insuring homes that haven't been raised could cost just as much.

One Toms River New Jersey resident tells The Associated Press his insurance premiums might hit $30,000 per year if he doesn't jack up his house.

He and other homeowners are waiting to see whether coastal rebuilding rules will simply make it too expensive to stay.