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New maps (found on this site as Preliminary DFIRMs) include the most current rainfall, elevation and other key data with the latest modeling technology to provide the most up-to-date picture of the area’s flood risk. The result: a better picture of the areas most likely to be impacted by flooding and a better foundation from which to make key decisions.
Through the National Flood Insurance Program, coverage can often be obtained at significant savings. The average cost for a flood insurance policy is approximately $600 per year. Further, homeowners may qualify for a Preferred Risk Policy that covers both a building and its contents for as little as $129 per year. Coverage for renters starts at just $49 a year. Talk to your insurance agent to determine the appropriate level of protection you need and the money savings options that are available.
Preferred Risk Policies, which start at just $129 a year, are only available for properties in moderate- to low-risk areas. However, recognizing the financial burden that being mapped into a high-risk area and having to purchase flood insurance can place on affected property owners, FEMA extended the eligibility period of the low-cost Preferred Risk Policies for two years for buildings that have been newly mapped into high-risk flood zones. In general, this cost-saving option is available to property owners whose buildings have a favorable flood loss history and who may or may not have received limited amounts of federal disaster assistance. The NFIP “Grandfathering” rules recognize policyholders who have built in compliance with the flood map in place at the time of construction or who have maintained continuous coverage. These rules allow such policyholders to benefit in the premium rating for their building. Flood insurance premiums should be calculated using the new map if it results in a lower premium.
Renewal of an Existing PolicyWhen determining the premium you will pay for flood insurance, an insurance agent will rate your flood insurance policy based on the flood map that is in effect on the date you purchase your policy. Flood insurance policies may then be renewed and still be rated based on the flood map in effect when the policy was initially rated as long as the flood insurance coverage is continuous and the building has not been altered in a manner that would remove this benefit. For example, if the building on the property is currently mapped in an X zone, you could purchase the policy before the flood maps are adopted and keep the lower rate associated with the X zone even after the new flood maps become effective. To help maintain this grandfathering benefit for the next owner, you may transfer the policy to them at the time of sale. An insurance agent can provide you with information about eligibility for the Preferred Risk Policy and the Two-Year Eligibility Extension.
Under this Grandfather rule, the property owner must provide proper documentation to the insurance company.
For more information on PRPs and the Grandfathering rule, you should contact your agent.
Manhattan's map update project is a joint effort with FEMA in cooperation with local associations and private sector partners.
The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) has extended the low-cost Preferred Risk Policy eligibility period for two years to properties newly mapped into a high-risk zone. In addition, there are “grandfathering” rules to recognize policyholders who have built in compliance with the flood map or who maintain continuous coverage.
Upon the effective date of the new maps, you may be eligible for a lower-cost Preferred Risk Policy (PRP). Through your insurance agent, you can easily avoid any gaps in your flood coverage and receive a refund of unused premium by converting your existing policy to a Preferred Risk Policy back to its last effective date.
For more information on the mapping project process, please visit knowyourfloodriskMHK.com.