Property losses due to flooding total over $1 billion each year. Unfortunately, protection against loss due to floods is not covered under a homeowner’s policy. To help people recover financially and to induce communities to take flood management measures, the federal government began the National Flood Insurance Programs (NFIP). If your community is participating in the program, residents can obtain flood protection at reasonable rates.
To become eligible, a community must enter the emergency phase of the NFIP by adopting preliminary flood plan management measures. During this phase, property owners may purchase limited amounts of flood insurance at federally-subsidized rates.
In the second stage of the program, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) completes a detailed study and local officials enact an ordinance that requires all new or substantially-improved structures be built with recognition of the flood hazard. At this time, property owners may purchase increased amounts of insurance based on actual flood risk from a licensed insurance agent.
To see if your county is eligible for flood insurance, check with your community officials, local insurance agents, or the Federal Emergency Management Agency. You may call FEMA toll free at 888-379-9531 check its website or write to:
Federal Insurance Administration
Federal Emergency Management Agency
1725 I Street, NW
Washington, DC 20472
For more information on disaster preparedness and recovery visit the NC Disaster Information Center.
Adapted by NC State Extension specialists from materials supplied by the Federal Emergency Management.
Publication date: June 4, 2014
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