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Thread: Flood insurance

  1. #1
    Senior Member alphasigmookie's Avatar
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    Flood insurance

    https://www.wired.com/2017/03/great-...an-flood-risk/

    all around the country, the federal government is dramatically undervaluing the risk of flooding to their homes or businesses.

    The lie originates from the National Flood Insurance Program, which sets rates for 5 million people living in flood-prone areasóbased on flood projections that are sometimes decades out of date. Even when the projections are updated, the program lets people pay the old, underpriced insurance rates. Thatís left the program $24 billion in debt, running an annual deficit of $1.5 billion. Congress is currently holding hearings to reauthorize the NFIP and put it back in the black. But updated, truthful flood insurance prices could put millions of home and business owners deep in the red.
    Interesting non-political article about the mess federal flood insurance has become. Basically it's way under-priced in many areas and flood maps are frequently out of date. Congress is working on re-authorizing it. Hopefully they're able to move things in the right direction.
    "Finding out that you have run out of toilet paper is a good example of lack of preparation, buying 10 years worth is silly"
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  2. #2

    Re: Flood insurance

    Back when people had more sense they farmed the bottom land, (flood plain) and lived on the hills.

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    Senior Member zorba's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    That's just what we need, the gooberment getting involved with insurance. That's ALWAYS worked out so well...
    -Zorba, "The Veiled Male"
    "Religion can't be allowed the coercive power of government,
    government can't be allowed the 'moral' justification of religion."

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    Senior Member Big Al1's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by zorba View Post
    That's just what we need, the gooberment getting involved with insurance. That's ALWAYS worked out so well...

    They've been in the ins business a long time. Crop insurance, flood, etc! Flood premiums have gone up a lot the last couple years.
    Last edited by Big Al1; 03-15-2017 at 11:38 PM.

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    Senior Member zorba's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Al1 View Post
    They've been in the ins business a long time. Crop insurance, flood, etc! Flood premiums have gone a lot the last couple years.
    Oh I know, and its always been a Charlie Foxtrot. It was "wonderful" when the state of California got into the earthquake insurance business - premiums quadrupled overnite.
    -Zorba, "The Veiled Male"
    "Religion can't be allowed the coercive power of government,
    government can't be allowed the 'moral' justification of religion."

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    Re: Flood insurance

    New flood plain surveys and building requirements were put in place on the MS Gulf Coast after Katrina. Probably 90% of the people could not afford to rebuild on their beachfront property due to the new regs and increased flood insurance premiums.

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    Senior Member Fisheadgib's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    My neighborhood has never flooded since records have been kept and after hurricane Ivan, it was rezoned as a flood plain even though it still didn't flood. Flood insurance around here is so expensive that few people have it.
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    I would drop trou too, and because I am a caring person I would've given that young man a hug.

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    Re: Flood insurance

    I have liability coverage and fire coverage on my house here in Fladah, but I have no hurricane-wind or flood damage coverage at all. Being retired military I have insurance with USAA, a company known far and wide to take darn good care of those it insures. Its been 2, maybe 3 years ago this coming May that my insurance premium suddenly jumped from around $2,200. to just over $6,000! USAA explained to me that the Company had no choice but to raise my annual premium to meet demands from the state of Florida to help underwrite coverage for those who could not afford hurricane coverage! So I dropped this coverage to keep my premium down around the $2,000. level. If you don't think that we live under a very socialistic form of government, you're crazy!

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    Senior Member tennmike's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by john9001 View Post
    Back when people had more sense they farmed the bottom land, (flood plain) and lived on the hills.
    That was back when people had common sense and also took the risk on their own hook. Then the Government got involved with the flood insurance scam, and people built in places KNOWING that they would be flooded out and Good Ol' Uncle Sugar would pull their fat out of the fire with a slice of largess from the public coffers(tax money and abysmally lowball insurance premiums). Nowadays, common sense is considered a superpower!
    When I hear the phrase "our democracy" spoken by politicians and talking news heads I see a red flag with a yellow hammer and sickle over their head.

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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by woodsrunner View Post
    I have liability coverage and fire coverage on my house here in Fladah, but I have no hurricane-wind or flood damage coverage at all. Being retired military I have insurance with USAA, a company known far and wide to take darn good care of those it insures. Its been 2, maybe 3 years ago this coming May that my insurance premium suddenly jumped from around $2,200. to just over $6,000! USAA explained to me that the Company had no choice but to raise my annual premium to meet demands from the state of Florida to help underwrite coverage for those who could not afford hurricane coverage! So I dropped this coverage to keep my premium down around the $2,000. level. If you don't think that we live under a very socialistic form of government, you're crazy!
    That is one of the things I do NOT miss about Florida. Loved the state but my South FL insurance rates were killing me!!! My insurance bill on the new house is a just a hair over $1,000 and my car(s) and boat insurance are less than half of my FL premiums.
    "Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching." General George S. Patton

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    Re: Flood insurance

    john9001 and Mike hit the nail on the head! And, being Southern Appalachian Mountain bred and reared, I "taken kar of myself" when I built the house. Solid Cypress logs, dovetail jointed, Southern Mountain style, trees that would hit the house in a storm removed, 42 feet above the 100 year flood plain, etc, etc. A category 2+ hurricane will do some roof damage for sure, but the area that I'm in has probably not had a hurricane stronger than a category 1 since records have been kept.

  12. #12
    Senior Member bisley's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    The version of flood insurance I have is not very expensive, because I'm not anywhere near the 100 year flood plain. But it has come in handy for water leaks.

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    Senior Member tennmike's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    A good example of this being 'too poor to pay attention' is the area where I live. Sewee Creek runs from a long way East of me to below Watts Bar Dam, and runs through my place. During really heavy rains it gets outside its banks and floods the lowland fields up to a few feet at times.

    A bunch of farms along this creek have been sold as 5+ acre 'baby farms'(no flood plain disclosure required on 5+ acres here). And that's where the fun begins. I went to a lot of the auctions with intent on maybe buying a lot or three and reselling, but gave up on that as the auctioneers employees were running up the bids. Anyway, fast forward to people building on the lots they bought. Most, but not all, had suitable building sites above the normal max flood level. But a LOT of the people built close to the creek and definitely in the normal annual flood plain. They were not amused when their houses and double and single wide mobile homes were sitting with a 1 foot deep wading pool inside. More than a few of the single and double wides were swept off their foundations. A lot of those waterlogged houses and trailers resold quick or went into default and resold, multiple times by disgruntled new owners.

    They were told how high the water got, shown with pictures and trash lines, and not to build on the low ground by us locals, but figured us 'ignorant hicks' didn't know what we were talking about. Sometimes you just got to let folks float their own stick to figure it out.
    When I hear the phrase "our democracy" spoken by politicians and talking news heads I see a red flag with a yellow hammer and sickle over their head.

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    Senior Member bisley's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    The company I worked for owned several thousand acres in the Sabine River bottom, and wanted to make money off of pine trees. They decided to plant everything above the 'extreme' high water mark and assigned me the task of finding that elevation and staking it. I was uncomfortable with the responsibility, but couldn't get rid of it, so I spent several days walking the bottoms out and flagging the obvious high water stains on trees, bridges, fences, etc. Then I and my helper took off from a USGS benchmark and ran a level 'loop' around and tied them all to it, (elevation-wise). All but 2-3 of them came up at the same elevation, within an inch or so, and the closure error in my level loop was less than a tenth of a foot, so I called it good. Then, I looked up the highest known flood level on the Sabine River Authority web site, and it fit within two inches of the average of all my stain marks.

    So, then, I added another 3" (it was 'flat' ground, or I would have made it more) and staked that contour across the entire property, and told them it was ready to go. The whole thing took less than two weeks, and the engineers were skeptical, because it looked too easy to them. It wasn't easy, labor-wise, but it wasn't rocket science, either. I told them it was right, and that even if it wasn't, the water would subside before it killed the trees, anyway. They reluctantly accepted it, and planted hundreds of acres on my say-so.

    About five years later, we got torrential rains and the Sabine was 'out' all over east Texas. The president of the company and chief engineers took off on four-wheelers to check the damages to their precious pine trees. After about 2 days of playing in the mud, they came back and jokingly criticized me for leaving 20' of beach front property that they could have planted pine trees on. I told them (also jokingly) that I allowed a 20' strip for a road, and they believed me. That summer, they sent a dozer out there to clear a high water road through the property.

    I mention all of this only to say that it ain't hard to figure out where it's safe to put up permanent structures. Any scrupulous real estate man could hire a surveyor for one day and probably figure it out, or borrow a level and do it himself. The problem is that they can't stand to sell the flood land for less money, because sometimes it goes years without flooding, and looks just like the high ground. So, unless bound by law, they usually just pretend ignorance, or go out of their way not to learn the bad news.

  15. #15
    Senior Member NN's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    So we have flood insurance and in costs the Govt plenty.

    If we don't have flood insurance we still have FEMA and it costs the govt plenty.

    So say we get rid of flood insurance, FEMA will still put out money that will cost the Govt plenty with not even a token payment coming in from flood insurance;
    end result even more of a deficit.

    As it is now FEMA does not spend all that is needed in devastated areas, should they or not is not the issue they will.

    Local Govts have to establish where homes can be built and how high they must be on pilings or block walls if allowed in flood plains.

    I have flood insurance and used it once, I think about $3000; so, for the most part I am just subsiding other peoples problems.

    I'm good with it because the alternative would be higher taxes. IMO
    If this does not add to the forum knowledge base------you get what you get!

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    Senior Member coolgunguy's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    See, that's the thing. I don't own a house or land in a flood plane, nor do I own on a beachfront. I am, however required to subsidize those who choose to. I have no problem with a person needing or wanting the financial security that comes with such protection, I just don't like having to partially provide it 'because they'll take it anyway'. Yeah, I get it that 'flood insurance' also covers me in the event that a broken pipe floods my basement, I just don't understand why you should be required to partially foot the bill for my repairs. IMO, FEMA money should be subsistence money, not rebuilding money. Flood insurance pays for rebuilding/repairing my house, and comes from my pocket... not yours.
    Tim Mason

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    Senior Member cpj's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    If my house floods due to rain water, I'm gonna hitch a ride with Noah and all the other animals. Because if the water backs up that high, this town is screwed.
    People who say it can't be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

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    Senior Member bisley's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    My mother's house was vacant for the last few months of her life. I left the water turned on so relatives could spend the night, when visiting her. The toilet supply line ruptured and ran a half inch stream of water at 45 lbs. of pressure for somewhere between two weeks and a month, until my wife finally noticed water running out the front door. The water bill, that month was nearly $500, with another $200 on the next bill. State Farm spent over $35,000, restoring it to excellent condition and paying hard cash for the damaged furniture and clothing, etc..

    My dad had taken out flood insurance several years earlier, when a night time leak from the hot water tank ruined all of their brand new carpet. I didn't have to do a thing. Had they not had the insurance, it would have been pretty much totaled out, with nobody but me to do the labor and pay for material. I could not have done it, in less than a year, and we were expecting her to be moving back into it, within a month.

    Don't underestimate the amount of damage that a simple leak can cause.

  19. #19
    Senior Member cpj's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Oh I know what leaks can do. When I think of flood insurance, I think of.....floods. Not leaky plumbing.
    People who say it can't be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

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    Re: Flood insurance

    What kills me is the people that have their house on the beach and become devastated when a hurricane destroys it. Then they have it rebuilt there again. And again. And again.....

  21. #21
    Senior Member snake284's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by zorba View Post
    That's just what we need, the gooberment getting involved with insurance. That's ALWAYS worked out so well...
    Actually they've been doing it for a good many years. It's not all that expensive and they do pay off like a Vegas Slot!

    My sister and Brother in Law lived about a block from Bayou Bon Facon out of Slidell LA and got flooded 13 times. Finally Fema came in and raised their house, Slab and all 11 1/2 feet. Then when Katrina hit they had 8 feet of water in the yard but not a drop in the house. Those houses in their neighborhood that weren't raised yet were ruined.

    Fema runs the Federal flood insurance business. It's one of the few things the government manages right. And it seems that it doesn't matter what administration is in power, it seems to be very consistent.
    Last edited by snake284; 03-19-2017 at 02:02 PM.
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    Senior Member coolgunguy's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by snake284 View Post
    Actually they've been doing it for a good many years. It's not all that expensive and they do pay off like a Vegas Slot!

    My sister and Brother in Law lived about a block from Bayou Bon Facon out of Slidell LA and got flooded 13 times. Finally Fema came in and raised their house, Slab and all 11 1/2 feet. Then when Katrina hit they had 8 feet of water in the yard but not a drop in the house. Those houses in their neighborhood that weren't raised yet were ruined.

    Fema runs the Federal flood insurance business. It's one of the few things the government manages right. And it seems that it doesn't matter what administration is in power, it seems to be very consistent.

    This is EXACTLY my point. Thirteen ing times, and finally John Q got to buy them a nice 'keep your house dry' kit at taxpayer expense.

    Thirteen times.

    This is something "done right"?!?
    Tim Mason

  23. #23
    Senior Member snake284's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by NN View Post
    So we have flood insurance and in costs the Govt plenty.

    If we don't have flood insurance we still have FEMA and it costs the govt plenty.

    So say we get rid of flood insurance, FEMA will still put out money that will cost the Govt plenty with not even a token payment coming in from flood insurance;
    end result even more of a deficit.

    As it is now FEMA does not spend all that is needed in devastated areas, should they or not is not the issue they will.

    Local Govts have to establish where homes can be built and how high they must be,

    I have flood insurance and used it once, I think about $3000; so, for the most part I am just subsiding other peoples problems.

    I'm good with it because the alternative would be higher taxes. IMO
    That's because Fema runs the government flood insurance. It used to cost about $100 per $10,000 worth. I had $30000 worth. I think I could have bull dozed my house and built a brand new one for that. $300 bucks a year and I lived in a flood plain because I was 2 blocks from the bay and 15 1/2 feet above sea level.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
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  24. #24
    Senior Member snake284's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by Rocketman View Post
    What kills me is the people that have their house on the beach and become devastated when a hurricane destroys it. Then they have it rebuilt there again. And again. And again.....

    True, but if you live in South Louisiana what you gonna do? I guess move. But that's where their jobs were. In the whole South Louisiana there isn't a hill over 5 foot high and a lot of it's 4' to 10' below sea level.

    Here in South Texas where I live close to the bay, you gotta drive 20 miles to get to 20 feet above sea level. But, we haven't had a bad flood since 1960 when we had a 30 inch rain in 24 hours. Hurricane Carla had an 18 foot storm surge here in Port Lavaca, 21 feet in Port O'Connor, which is like a mile from the Gulf Beach. My house that I owned before my first divorce was only 15 1/2' above sea level and in Carla with an 18 1/2 foot surge didn't get water in that house because of the wind directions and a slight hill between the house and the bay. Water does strange things with a wind driving it.
    Last edited by snake284; 03-19-2017 at 02:26 PM.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
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  25. #25
    Senior Member snake284's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by coolgunguy View Post
    This is EXACTLY my point. Thirteen ing times, and finally John Q got to buy them a nice 'keep your house dry' kit at taxpayer expense.

    Thirteen times.

    This is something "done right"?!?

    It isn't the people that have flood insurance that rip off the rest of us. It's people that build right up next to the threat and can't even buy insurance but the government still bails em out every year.

    People that have flood insurance pay a premium that off sets the cost. But it's the ones that don't have it and then cry like hell when disaster hits and get a new house that are the ones I have a problem with. When you hear of all these billions it cost every time a storm hits it's because people build in the threat and still get paid off when their house falls off in the river.

    My sister and brother in law paid a premium every year. If your company moved from Texas to Louisiana and you found a deal on a house where you could get flood insurance, And you needed your job, would you turn it down? This bureaucracy we live in fosters such crap. Maybe Trump's admin will do something about it. But I doubt it, there is too much money already invested in swamp land communities.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
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  26. #26
    Senior Member snake284's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by coolgunguy View Post
    This is EXACTLY my point. Thirteen ing times, and finally John Q got to buy them a nice 'keep your house dry' kit at taxpayer expense.

    Thirteen times.

    This is something "done right"?!?
    Fema or the common guy are not the problem. I'm agreeing it's a problem, but the agency itself is doing with what they have and it's the bureaucracy that is the problem.

    But there's something else to this. I don't know where you live but you definitely don't live in a Hurricane zone. But are you in Tornado ally? A lot of people on this forum live where there are frequent tornados. It's hard to find a place that's not hit by some form of natural disaster on occasion. So they don't get hit every year, Well there hasn't been a hurricane hit here in 13 years and that was a minor cat one. It's been 56 years this next September since we had a major one. Yet not 80 miles south of me they have had some and also in Houston and Galveston they've had a couple a lot more recently. That's just a point on a compass or they could have hit this place square in the nose. If you live in Tornado ally you can go 100 years without getting hit but yet a mile away a block may have been devastated. So who's to say when your number is up with a disaster? So though you may not have ever gotten a penny in disaster relief you may need it one day. We all pay for these things with tax money, but all of us may never need it, but when we do we do. It's kinda like pay me now or pay me later.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
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  27. #27
    Senior Member coolgunguy's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    My problem isn't with folks who decide to avail themselves of a product that is offered, in this case, flood insurance. What I have a problem with is Uncle Sugar swooping in to save the day, time and again and requiring me, you and everybody else to finance the effort.

    Yes, there has to be disaster relief. Yes, it has to be comprehensive, widespread and available to even the most destitute in society. No, it does not have to continuously enable people to make poor decisions.

    I'm sure your relatives are wonderful people, deserving of all life has to offer...but I have to ask why would they continue living in a place that floods as often as theirs does? More importantly, why should the rest of us have to pay for it?
    Tim Mason

  28. #28
    Senior Member orchidman's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Two old guys are sitting on a park bench passing the time.
    One says to the other " Had a fire last week, completely razed the house to the ground. Insurance company paid out $400,000 in settlement".

    Second guy says " I had a flood last week, completely destroyed the house. Insurance company paid out $600,00 in settlement".

    After 5 minutes silence the first guy turns to the second guy and whispers quietly " How do you start a flood?"
    Still enjoying the trip of a lifetime and making the best of what I have.....

  29. #29
    Senior Member Varmintmist's Avatar
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    Re: Flood insurance

    Quote Originally Posted by snake284 View Post
    Fema or the common guy are not the problem. I'm agreeing it's a problem, but the agency itself is doing with what they have and it's the bureaucracy that is the problem.

    If you live in Tornado ally you can go 100 years without getting hit but yet a mile away a block may have been devastated. So who's to say when your number is up with a disaster? So though you may not have ever gotten a penny in disaster relief you may need it one day. We all pay for these things with tax money, but all of us may never need it, but when we do we do. It's kinda like pay me now or pay me later.
    Apples to oranges.

    If you live in tornado alley, you MIGHT get hit by a tornado twice in your lifetime, that is a natural disaster and why we pay taxes and fund FEMA If you live in the NE you MIGHT get a hurricane that floods part of the state twice in your lifetime, that is a natural disaster and why we pay taxes and fund FEMA. If you live in a floodplain where you get washed out every other year, that is just normal weather not a disaster. Deal with it yourself, you know its coming.
    It's boring, and your lack of creativity knows no bounds.

  30. #30
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    Re: Flood insurance

    A cousin used to live a few mils from the MS Gulf but on a back bayou. After paying for flood ins for 2-3 yrs they just put the $ in a savings acct and paid for house repairs when the house did flood. The floods were not deep until Katrina. After that 1 his wife was ready to move. As for as I know they never took a dime of govt $ to fix their house.

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