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Old 09-10-2009, 06:12 AM
 
1,645 posts, read 2,780,087 times
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Question Flood Zones in Madison County, Madison & Huntsville

I see a lot of new construction and areas where the zones flood regularly. How does one go about verifying if they are in a flood zone or not? Are there maps or people we call to get this information? Can we get links to this information? I think before people buy, they need to understand this as well. Also, who is responsible for sharing this information? The builders, the homeowners selling, or is the buyer also in charge of discovering this information?

I have a friend looking here and would like to know how to help him.
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Old 09-10-2009, 06:18 AM
 
Location: Athens, AL
205 posts, read 367,636 times
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I know that the surveyors have access to this information. I think originally, the USGS (US Geological Society... I think) maps had this on them. Of course, flood planes change due to re-grading efforts. Anyway, it is a pain to get a re-do... we had to deal with this in our Habitat subdivision. If there is a plot plan for your area, it will be on it. check with the City offices, City Planner, something in that area.

Insurance will be higher if you build or live within a 100 year flood zone.
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Old 09-10-2009, 06:25 AM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,362 posts, read 53,458,962 times
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[quote=dramamama;10690748]How does one go about verifying if they are in a flood zone or not? Are there maps or people we call to get this information? Can we get links to this information?[quote]


City of Huntsville GIS maps (looks like these maps cover all of Madison County)

City of Huntsville Interactive Maps

Select the 100 and/or 500 year flood plain layer.


The tool is pretty good (looks updated in the past few months). You'll have to play around with it to get use to the view but it is nice.
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Old 09-10-2009, 06:56 AM
 
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We checked before we bought our home and know we are not in a flood zone. But if you are in a flood zone, how does that affect the insurance payments?
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Old 09-10-2009, 07:06 AM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,362 posts, read 53,458,962 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dramamama View Post
We checked before we bought our home and know we are not in a flood zone. But if you are in a flood zone, how does that affect the insurance payments?
I don't know, I guess someone would have to apples to apples compare two houses, one in and one out. Or, they could call an insurance agent to provide a ballpark estimate.

One data point: Our house is in a 500 year flood plain and not in a 100 year flood plain and flood insurance is $400/year.
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Old 09-10-2009, 07:41 AM
 
Location: on the road to less flab!
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Default Go to FEMA's website to start

Floodsmart.gov: Your premier resource for flood insurance information

You can input the address for general info. Also has links to flood maps.
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Old 09-10-2009, 07:51 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles View Post
I don't know, I guess someone would have to apples to apples compare two houses, one in and one out. Or, they could call an insurance agent to provide a ballpark estimate.

One data point: Our house is in a 500 year flood plain and not in a 100 year flood plain and flood insurance is $400/year.
What is the difference--what does 500 and 100 year plain... mean? Does it mean that your house is in a plain that will flood for up to 500 years?
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Old 09-10-2009, 07:51 AM
 
Location: Madison, AL
1,930 posts, read 1,723,204 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dramamama View Post
I see a lot of new construction and areas where the zones flood regularly. How does one go about verifying if they are in a flood zone or not? Are there maps or people we call to get this information? Can we get links to this information? I think before people buy, they need to understand this as well. Also, who is responsible for sharing this information? The builders, the homeowners selling, or is the buyer also in charge of discovering this information?

I have a friend looking here and would like to know how to help him.

In the MLS listings, there is a map overlay that shows the "approximate" flood zone areas where lenders will/may require flood insurance. If you click on the address in the MLS listing and pull up the interactive map, you can option to include the flood overlay. However, sometimes this can conflict with the flood certification done by the lender prior to closing.

The best thing to do is, if it is close, you can make the contract contingent upon property NOT requiring flood insurance if it is a major concern. To be honest, most homes in the flood zone have never flooded. Flood insurance can vary, but I would say a safe number (again, depends on many factors, including FICO, home value, ect) would be about $500.

Even if you are not in a flood zone, flood insurance is a good thing to have. If a pipe burst in your home, guess what? Most insurance will not cover that, they consider any type of water damage as "flood". Check with your agent for recommendations.

Since AL is buyer beware, it is the due diligence of the buyer to verify these facts, but you can consult with the MLS map overlay before contract to see approximately where the property is in conjunction with the flood plan (that would require flood insurance, we are ALL in some type of flood plan.)
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Old 09-10-2009, 07:55 AM
 
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Thanks LTC--I do know of someone who believes he is not in a flood plain, but he actually is after looking at the data. Perhaps he trusted his sales agent too much. We all know this is a buyer beware state and have since learned just how much we have to be aware as newbies. But the good thing is my friend will have an inspection--we did--and we did check on the plains etc.

And yes, we all know we need flood insurance for the problems that can happen within the home like burst pipes etc. Not fun.

Thanks
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:23 AM
 
4,925 posts, read 5,995,156 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dramamama View Post
What is the difference--what does 500 and 100 year plain... mean? Does it mean that your house is in a plain that will flood for up to 500 years?
It is basically referring to the odds of you flooding. For example a hundred year flood plain is a place that in general could expect a flood bad enough to flood that spot once every hundred years or so...in other words, for any given year, you have a 1 in 100 chance of flooding. A home in a 500 year flood plain would have a much less chance of flooding than the 100 year flood plain.

Of course, your mileage may vary...
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