Throughout 2017, there has been discussion in Congress surrounding the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which is set to expire tomorrow, Dec. 8. The program was established in 1968 as a service to at-risk communities by providing flood insurance in exchange for communities’ adoption of floodplain management regulations. Today, while many sources expect at least a short-term reauthorization, the program insures approximately 5 million homes throughout the country.
Looking at the recent history of legislation surrounding the program, national flood insurance premiums look likely to increase in coming years. In 2012, Congress passed the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act, resulting in the planned removal of subsidies from the flood insurance policies. This would have increased premiums by up to 10 times in some cases. Though this law was replaced in 2014 by the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act, price increases are likely to return in coming years, as current estimations show that NFIP policies are being given at approximately half of the market rate. However, there are still ways communities can use the NFIP to their full advantage while bolstering against future price increases and preparing for flood disasters. Continue reading