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Norm's Desk

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Flood Insurance Increases Quickly Approaching

Back in July we blogged about the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 which will mean big increases in flood insurance premiums starting in October.  The combination of NFIP ‘true flood risk’ increases and new federal flood zone maps is a one-two punch for homeowners and businesses at risk for flooding.  Some residents in Nassau Bay could see their rates go from $1,500 to $10,000 – possibly even $20,000 – according to City Manager Chris Reed.  (Houston Chronicle, 8/12/13)  With the new maps, officials estimate that the number of houses considered to be in the flood plain will almost double.  
Another major concern is that new property owners will not be allowed to take over policies with subsidized rates, so buyers will have to pay full risk-based premiums.  This will make coastal real estate unaffordable for most.  Those who already live in the flood-prone areas will have to pay the higher premiums or have their house physically raised out of the flood plain.  
Many homeowners are opting to pass on flood insurance and accept the risk.  But long term that will not sustain the National Flood Insurance Program.  
Groups from the Gulf Coast to New England are protesting Biggert-Waters and hoping for legislation to change it, but October 1 is on the radar and quickly approaching. 
To see what zone you're in, click FEMA maps or call 1-877-FEMA-MAP.

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