Sept. 2, 2013

National Flood Insurance Protects Property Owners and Buyers in the Greater Myrtle Beach Area

Because changing weather patterns that include torrential rains, hurricanes and tornadoes can impact your property at a moment’s notice, you should make sure if you are buying property or if you own property in the Greater Myrtle Beach Area that you have flood protection in place.  The Biggerts-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012, known as BW-12, is undergoing some changes that will assure the program of a more financially stable status and insurance rates that more accurately reflect the real risk of flooding on your property.  If you own property or are buying property in Myrtle Beach you will be impacted by these upgrades in BW-12.  Over the next few months, various components of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to include flood hazard mapping, management of floodplains, and grants will undergo changes that improve the entire program for consumers.

FEMA is already changing the flood maps for Myrtle Beach and Horry Count to include some properties that were not previously in a flood zone; other properties that were in a higher flood zone may be moved to a lower zone based on their Base Flood Elevation adjustment under the new guidelines.   At the center of all changes to your flood insurance policy is obtaining an Elevation Certificate that shows the true elevation of your property and the premium that is associated with your risk.  If you don’t currently have an Elevation Certificate, you can ask your local flood plain manager if one is on file for your property.  If one is on file for you, the community floodplain manager can complete your Certificate of Elevation; if one isn’t readily available, you should hire an engineer or surveyor to complete one for your property.  The bottom line is that having proper documentation, an Elevation Certificate, in hand will help you to ascertain the correct premium that you should be required to pay.

If you are purchasing property in the Greater Myrtle Beach Area, you must make sure that the Seller of that property has the proper Elevation Certificate on file for the property that you are purchasing.  Flood Insurance coverage IS transferable to you as the Buyer.  By simply transferring the new policy over to you using the documentation that is on file regarding property elevation, some significant savings can be realized.  FEMA has set rate guidelines for all flood insurance policies so there isn’t a need to comparison shop for rates because all insurance companies will be using the same rate schedules.

There are resources available to help you save money on your flood insurance premiums if the property that you own or are interested in purchasing lies in one of the Special Flood Hazard Areas.  By consulting with one of the professionals at Beach Realty Group, you can be confidently directed to a team that can answer your questions and obtain the answers that you have regarding adequate protection for your property.  Owning or buying property that may be in a flood zone requires extra time and effort to ascertain the coverage that you need to have in place to protect you during an unforeseen circumstance beyond your control.

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