New flood maps could mean expensive insurance |


New flood maps could mean expensive insurance |

To those who live near a river, creek, pond or any other body of water in Fulton County, be forewarned.

Tuesday could be your last day to save a bundle on flood insurance.

On Wednesday, new Federal Emergency Management Agency maps officially take effect for Fulton, reclassifying more than 3,000 properties as being at high-risk for flooding. It’s part of a massive remapping project in counties and cities across the state, with FEMA and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources reassessing flood risk along a 107-mile area of the Upper Chattahoochee River Basin.

The new flood risk maps for Cobb, DeKalb and Gwinnett counties went into effect in the spring. The updated maps are especially important for Cobb, where seven days of rainfall four years ago led to historic flooding not seen in hundreds of years.

If any part of a house — the structure, not the property — now falls inside a so-called high-risk flood hazard area, flood insurance becomes federally required by a mortgage lender. At worst, a homeowner who now carries no flood insurance could be forced to pay up to $10,000 a year, according to an agent.

“The premiums could go astronomically high,” said Rod Hall, a Cobb County-based flood insurance specialist.

Insurance experts say there’s a way around that. Buy a policy before the maps go into effect, and you could still pay a low-risk rate, which would be hundreds of dollars rather than thousands of dollars, with the low-risk designation locked in for at least another year.

via New flood maps could mean expensive insurance |

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