Flood Map Knowledge | Flood Insurance Program

2021 Flood Map Knowledge is Changing| Flood Insurance Program

UPDATE:  As of October 1, 2021 the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will have a new system that all towns, commercial and residential real estate will need to comply with going forward.  There will no longer be designated flood zones (i.e. A, AE, AV, etc.) but will now take into account climate impact on tide and water rises.  The new program is called Risk Rating 2.0 and will incorporate third-party, commercially compiled catastrophe flood models and replacement cost data for property.  No other information is available as of yet on how these changes will impact flood insurance costs but stay tuned here.  If you are a client of mine I will bring you the latest and best information as it comes available.

One of the first questions I get from coastal home buyers is do I need a flood insurance program to cover this property if I buy it?  If you live in coastal real estate anywhere flood map knowledge is essential, there are some helpful tips I will share with you here on flood insurance programunderstanding the flood insurance program.  You really should not leave this up to your insurance agent to tell you that you are or are not in a flood plain.

In Rhode Island coastal real estate it is called taking charge of what you own.  So what is a homeowner to do?
First and foremost is to take a trip to your town’s planning department.  The planning department staff can print out from the most current flood plain maps your street area.  No, the FEMA flood plain maps do not overlay onto the towns plat maps.  It seems that is too much to ask for in how the government does it.  You need to look at the aerial view of the homes on a plat map against the FEMA flood map notations to see whether your flood zone has increased or decreased for your property.

I am attaching a picture of one in a Rhode Island neighborhood so you can see how all the polka dots work on the different flood zones.  You want to be in a X or C zone which are the lowest risk.  The other flood zones bring with it increased flood insurance costs.  If you have a mortgage on the property flood insurance will be required. {UPDATE: as of October 2013, C zones do not exist anymore just X flood zone for the lowest risk}.

flood insurance program

North Kingstown real estate neighborhood flood map

As you can see this is no easy task in interpretation especially if your home is in one of the bordering flood locations.  I always suggest obtaining an elevation certificate from a licensed civil engineer that can challenge any insurance company’s information.  It is something to know about in case you find your property in a special flood hazard zone.

Understanding flood maps takes time and some knowledge.  It is essential for any RI coastal real estate agent to be familiar with and know how to deal with.  Know what the changes in the Flood Insurance program are for the current year and be pro-active in protecting your property with the right insurance.  Flood Map Knowledge | Flood Insurance Program.


Ginny Lacey Gorman is your go to coastal Rhode Island real estate agent for RI real estate and beyond…knowing the geographic area, schools, happenings and important tidbits of local information.  Email me at RiByTheBay@gmail.com to make an appointment to find the home of your dreams too!
Waterfront, oceanfront, luxury and coastal Rhode Island real estate are my specialty but all of RI is my backyard.  When you are in need of a real estate professional and specialist for your buying, selling or relocating needs and an internet savvy marketer who sells RI houses in this real estate market call Ginny at 401.529.7849.