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Old     (thedude)      Join Date: Jul 2010       02-16-2012, 8:56 AM Reply   
Sorry all, not sure where to put this but I'm in a bit of a bind:

I'm getting close to purchasing a house on the river outside of Pittsburgh PA. I need to get flood insurance because being that its riverfront, its in flood zone AE. I'm being told all the flood insurance has to go through FEMA, which my agent is quoting my something like $4800/year for a 1440 square foot place. The first floor is above grade and all garage/mechanical room/storage. The 2nd and 3rd floors are the living spaces.

Is there any way to get this premium down to a reasonable level? The previous owner said his was only $600/year. I had to get an elevation certificate done, which I did, and that is forcing these higher premiums.

What are my options? Anyone have any experience with this issue?

Old     (ScottR)      Join Date: Aug 2011       02-16-2012, 9:37 AM Reply   
Make sure you are quoting apples to apples. I deal with Insurance here in Indiana. My staff deals alot with Flood and they are the experts in it not me. They are saying that you don't have to cover the entire house only what your bank has a mortgage for dollars wise. Also, depending on deductible and things like that pricing can be different. We have never seen a flood policy cheaper than $1000, so $600 seems really low, but they may have had the house paid off and just wanted a small dollar figure covered.

Call your Agent but then also call around. Pricing should be almost the same since every policy does go through FEMA. If it were me, I would cover what I have to cover for the bank and what I could afford to cover since it is a river and not a lake. One bad flood and you are out much more than $4000. Good luck.
Old     (slob02)      Join Date: Mar 2004       02-16-2012, 10:54 AM Reply   
We are in a flood zone now (AE) (still don't know whyor how it changed). We were told it was going to be around $300/month and ended up paying around $400.00 per year. This is just for the house built in 2007. Not the contents inside.
Good Luck!!

sites with a lot of info.................
Old     (psudy)      Join Date: Dec 2003       02-16-2012, 2:01 PM Reply   
The regulation changed just a little while back. For a while we were forced to have people cover the market value of the home, it has since gone back to loan value. There are some very strict rules on rebuilding if the home is flooded and you have a claim. You also need to make sure you regular homeowners insurance will cover if you cannot rebuild in the same location.
Old     (lhlocal)      Join Date: Jun 2003       02-16-2012, 5:42 PM Reply   
It might be a long shot but talk to a surveyor about a LOMA. I know I qualified and my neighbor didn't It all has to do with where the dirt hits the foundation. If you're close, some creative landscaping will solve the issue. Also be sure to shop around for insurance. We owe around 350 on our house and its a little over 400 year.
Old     (tn_rider)      Join Date: Dec 2009       02-16-2012, 9:50 PM Reply   
I'd have your property surveyed and see if your home is even in the flood stage. I'm a land surveyor in Tennessee we get a couple flood level surveys a month here. I think that's your best bet.
Old     (wakedog)      Join Date: May 2003       02-17-2012, 8:04 AM Reply   
Went through this recently. FEMA said the property was in flood zone A (high risk). That would have put our property and virtually hundreds if not thousands of properties in flood zone A. We had to prove to FEMA the property was not in flood zone A but zone X (low risk) as even stated on the plat. We had an elevation survey done and filled out the paper work to FEMA to get a LOMA (letter of map ammendment). Now the property is not in flood zone A. Use the link below to see where your property is and if there are any LOMAs in your area.
Old     (srock)      Join Date: Mar 2002       02-17-2012, 11:49 AM Reply   
Did the same thing as Wakedog. Was not complicated at all. Just follow the directions.
Old     (thedude)      Join Date: Jul 2010       02-17-2012, 12:28 PM Reply   
Thanks for the information guys. The house was built in 1995, and the previous owner paid about $600/yr for flood insurance. My load will be for about 187k, and the lender requires flood insurance in that amount. The place is on the Monongahela river outside of Pittsburgh.

After doing some river research and consulting the elevation certificate. The lowest elevation of the house is 755', flood stage of the river is 746' at which point the water will flow over top of the dam downstream of me. The actual river elevation has gotten to 755' about 4 times since 1967. So I guess technically my 1st floor (garage/storage/mechanical room) could have water enter every 8-10 years or so.

Guys that have filed amendments to the maps- Has your place actually every flooded? Has your river/lake every flooded to the point where water enters even if you are in flood zone X now?

There are a couple LOMAs in my area, which is surprising because its pretty flat. Thanks for the information guys, its all very very helpful.
Old     (psudy)      Join Date: Dec 2003       02-17-2012, 1:08 PM Reply   
IMO you should try and get your home out of the flood zone by an elevation certificate, then go ahead and buy the flood insurance anyway. If you can prove the home is out of the zone, the insurance is still available, but a lot cheaper. Plus you wouldn't have to carry as much.


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