DISCLAIMER: I am certainly not an expert or an insurance agent, but these are my personal take-a-ways from community meetings, handouts and online research. For specific information regarding your home, you should contact your insurance agent.
This is an update to my blogs “The Bottom Line on Flood Insurance” and “What to Do About Flood Insurance”
Most of you know by now that the “Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act” was passed and signed on March 21, 2014. This is a big relief to many of us who live in FEMA flood zones.
Bottom line (as I can figure it from the FEMA overview):
– Primary homeowners will see a maximum of 18% rate increases each year (unless it is a severe repetitive-loss property and certain pre-FIRM buildings)
– Buyers will be able to assume the sellers’ flood insurance policies at the same rate (at least until FEMA “develops guidelines”
– All primary residence policies will see a $25 surcharge ($250 for all other policies) to assist with FEMA’s “financial sustainability goals”.
– Guidelines set for grandfathering when new maps are written (too confusing for me to summarize so you’ll need to figure it out yourself if it applies to you.)
– Refunds for those who overpaid based on the law change.
– Increase in maximum deductible to $10,000, which may lower your premium.
– Non-primary homeowners and businesses get no relief from passing of this Act (will still see 25% increases each year until achieving “non-subsidized” rate)
If you’re not sure if or how this affects you, contact your insurance agent! He/she is the expert on this topic!