Lenders and FEMA have been charging many property owners who shouldn’t have had to pay.
Every year, hundreds of homeowners in Oregon are wrongly informed that they must pay for expensive flood insurance coverage after having mistakenly fallen into an element of the states system that its coordinator feels is lacking in oversight and is in need of repairs.
The coordinator of the NFIP in the state said that this has become a problem and changes are needed.
The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in the state is, according to its coordinator, not adequately overseen and should be fixed sooner, rather than later. Furthermore, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which is responsible for overseeing the floodplain mapping process, has not taken considerable steps to help to assuage the concerns of a rapidly growing number of homeowners – such as those in Oregon – who feel that they are paying for flood insurance unnecessarily.
The struggle stems from the way that homeowners are told that they require flood insurance.
Lenders currently contact homeowners in order to inform them that they require flood insurance when they don’t have it. These institutions are under pressure from FEMA, which is facing a massive and growing amount of debt. However, within the process used by the lenders to actually identify which properties are within the flooding zones and therefore require the coverage, there are also homeowners who are nearby – but not actually within the boundaries – who are being contacted.
According to the FEMA regulations, the property owners home – and not just the land surrounding the structure – must be within the flooding zone’s boundary in order to require flood insurance coverage. However, lenders are using two-dimensional maps with which it is impossible to determine with any true precision what requires a vertical measurement. That is, the lenders cannot truly determine whether or not water would be able to reach a property owners home, using the tools that they have available to them.
Furthermore, as many lenders are not using surveyors to actually provide the necessary technical measurements for that purpose, the result is that some homeowners are unnecessarily paying thousands of dollars for flood insurance that they ultimately don’t require, over a matter of a few feet.