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Old 10-23-2015, 02:53 AM
Location: NH Lakes Region
406 posts, read 1,473,059 times
Reputation: 530


I went through this whole saga when I refinanced my home. When I bought the house in 2005, I was in a 500-year flood zone and required no flood insurance. When I refinanced in 2012, I had magically moved to a 100-year flood zone and flood insurance was required. I bought the insurance in order to refinance the loan, but the company agreed to refund it if/when I got a LOMA from FEMA. I had a registered survey on my property done with the required Certificate of Elevation, and FEMA checked that against their Base Flood Elevation (BFE) for where I am located. As long as the lowest point of your dwelling is AT OR ABOVE the BFE, they will "officially" remove your dwelling from the Flood Zone - and you will not need the flood insurance - or if you do opt to get it, it will be at a much reduced rate. I had the LOMA registered with the county, so should I decide to sell, although it may not convey with the property, it will show prospective buyers they can get an exemption and avoid the costly unnecessary insurance.

If you search through much older threads, I posted details of the process. It took a couple months, but was well worth the trouble. You only have to certify your home's elevation, FEMA has the BFE, and they will issue you a certificate that should be accepted by your lender.
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Old 10-23-2015, 08:21 AM
8,223 posts, read 20,458,898 times
Reputation: 9512
I do urge caution when using older threads because many of the processes and requirements have changed.

There is nothing more unsettling than having a homeowner needing to refinance due to a ARM or balloon note and now they are forced into flood coverage.
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Old 10-24-2015, 05:17 AM
12,018 posts, read 9,755,402 times
Reputation: 13420
Originally Posted by vllygrrl View Post
We closed on our new home this past Friday. While in the process of purchasing it, it was determined that our property was showing up on the FEMA SHFA map, requiring us to purchase flood insurance. Our attorney had a dwelling search completed, certified, and submitted to the bank to prove that although a portion of our property was indeed in the flood zone, the dwelling itself was not. Our mortgage broker then told us that the bank would not waive the option for flood insurance, so we purchased a policy at a preferred rate. The day before we were set to close, we were informed that the underwriters would not approve the mortgage unless we had purchased SHFA flood insurance!

My insurance agent was livid...but all phone calls to the bank went unheeded...they would not allow us to close without a new policy in place. We ended up purchasing a second flood insurance policy ($2300 vs $388) for the purpose of closing the loan....we could not get the original company to issue the policy, because they had independently determined that the structure is outside of the flood zone! After we closed, the insurance agent cancelled the new policy, and left the original one in place. It is for maximum coverage of both structure and contents. My question is this - as long as we have a flood policy in place, for the correct amount of coverage, why would the bank care how much it cost us? An extra $2000 per year is a lot of money!
What makes you think the bank cares about you
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Old 10-24-2015, 08:01 AM
Location: NC
7,743 posts, read 10,075,621 times
Reputation: 16325
I have never had to deal with these issues, but wonder if the difference in elevation between the part of the property in the flood zone and the part where the house is located is taken into account. I can imagine a creek bed that is 30 ft lower than the house and amenities, i.e., the property is relatively steep.
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