Coastal property insurance forum scheduled in Charleston on Thursday

Isle of Palms oceanfront on Friday September 27, 2013. Wade Spees/Staff The S.C. Department of Insurance is planned to hold its annual coastal property public information session on Thursday evening at The Citadel. ¬ Keywords: aerial, construction, building, housing, houses, development, coast, coastal, FEMA, flood insurance, rates, policy

The S.C. Department of Insurance is holding its annual coastal property insurance information session in Charleston on Thursday evening.

The forum is being held from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in Buyer Auditorium at Mark Clark Hall at The Citadel.

The event, which precedes the June 1 start of the hurricane season, includes presentations by meteorologists, real estate agents and insurance officials.

Issues planned to be addressed include South Carolina Wind and Hail Underwriting Association, The National Flood Insurance Program, the importance of mitigation and how homeowners can make homes more resilient to severe winds associated with hurricanes and damaging storms.

There have been growing complaints about rising rates for homeowner and flood insurance coverage recently, especially for coastal regions like Lowcountry.

Experts have said insurance companies are cutting liabilities by increasing deductible payments and scaling back their coverage territories.

The flood insurance program has been a hot-button topic as recent reforms could raise premiums for the federal program.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration recently predicted a below normal to near-normal hurricane activity this year.

The federal agency called for 8-13 storms, about half as many hurricanes and one or two major hurricanes.