TAMPA (WFLA) – Flood insurance rates are set to increase for new policies on Oct. 1 as the Federal Emergency Management Agency implements a new risk rating system.
“We are seeing probably 90 percent of homes affected locally in terms of rate increases and pretty drastic rate increases,” said Jake Holehouse with HH Insurance.
Holehouse says the rate increase may increase costs to homeowners by several thousand dollars a year.
“We have seen some examples of homes going from about $600 to $6000 and other homes on the barrier islands from $400 to $11,553,” said Holehouse.
The rate hike comes with FEMA implementing a program update it calls Risk Rating 2.0, which will change the way that flood insurance rates are calculated and charged and could lead to price increases for thousands of homeowners with waterfront properties. The changes coming through the system update are part of FEMA’s 2018-2022 Strategic Plan.
The City of Treasure Island is planning an informational meeting at their city hall on Thursday night to explain the changes to residents. Mayor Tyler Payne says the increases may greatly impact people on the barrier islands.
“As a beach mayor it almost makes me feel as though the federal government doesn’t want our communities to be in existence,” said Payne.
Jake Holehouse says homeowners can increase their deductible or look for a private insurance company to decrease their rates.
“Homeowners can basically look at the private flood market and locally here we have Neptune flood and they are a private flood provider. What we are seeing is huge rate decreases compared to the NFIP rates,” said Holehouse.
He says most homeowners will see their rates increase on April 1, 2022. There is a maximum increase of 18% per year, but the increases will continue for the next ten years.
For more detailed information on the projected premium changes, FEMA has made several ArcGIS dashboards available to explore state and county-level price changes.