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Is My House in a Flood Zone? Search FEMA Flood Map by Address and So Much More

The following article by Julia Weaver of Redfin is reposted to MassiveCert.com.

 

 

August 25, 2021 by Julia Weaver

 

 

Considering all that’s happening with climate change and the potential risk it brings to homeowners, you may be wondering if your house is in a flood zone. Whether you are a first-time homebuyer, looking to sell a vacation home, or simply a homeowner looking for some answers, you have the right and responsibility to find out.

 

How to Prepare for a Lapse in NFIP Authority

Here we go again. Every few years, it seems there’s a potential lapse in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). While very scary sounding and not without the possibility of serious consequences, it’s likely a resolution will be reached prior to the midnight, September 30 deadline, and even if it’s not, a lapse would likely be hours or days, not weeks or months. However, if there is a lapse, there are things lenders and insurance agents who write NFIP policies need to know.

Defining the Non-Guaranteed Determination

A Non-Guaranteed Determination is any product containing a FEMA flood zone where the provider does not guarantee the result. If you are from the lending industry, you may not have heard of this because you need guaranteed results for most all lending tasks to be federally compliant and have those results printed on a Standard Flood Hazard Determination Form. But in the insurance, communication, real estate, appraisal, and property management industries, there are dozens of uses for a Non-Guaranteed Determination because, frankly, it is a lot cheaper. You may be paying $8 for a Life of Loan Determination (if you pay more, contact MassiveCert sales) or less than $4 for the same Determination without the monitoring.

FEMA Flood Zones and the Mandatory Purchase Requirement

This article is written to aid the general public in understanding the mandatory purchase requirement and FEMA’s flood zone designations. It describes the FEMA zones and the mandatory purchase requirement at a high level and provides some details for those who have interest in nuances.

What is a pre-FIRM Flood Insurance Discount?

Pre-FIRM flood insurance means you can receive discounted flood insurance premiums from the federal government because your house was built before FEMA created a flood map for your property.

For most properties, pre-FIRM flood insurance discounts are available if your property was built before 12/1/1974. The actual date varies a little bit because all the flood maps were not created at the same time, so you’ll have to check with a professional (like MassiveCert) to know the exact date. If your property was built before a builder could have known about the flood risk, then you get a special discount on your flood insurance premiums.

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