Flood insurance rates rising in Lowcountry
The sea level isn’t the only thing rising. Premiums for federally backed flood insurance are in the process of increasing substantially.
The 45-year-old program is billions of dollars in debt, partially due to claims from huge weather events, such as Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy.
Following a new 2012 law aimed at getting the program on solid financial ground, big premium hikes began in January for some properties.
“Rates on almost all buildings that are, or will be, in special flood hazard areas will be revised over time to reflect full flood risks,” said the Federal Emergency Management Agency in a description of the impact.
Special flood hazard areas are generally the locations where property owners would be required to buy flood insurance.
The Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform and Modernization Act of 2012 removes subsidies for second homes, rentals and businesses, as well as dwellings that have had repeated flood losses. Premiums will rise as much as 25 percent yearly until they reflect full insurance risk.
Primary residences also will take a hit. They will be re-priced for flood insurance at non-subsidized rates if the property is sold or the policy lapses.