Well, one of our deals has hit a snag. Surprise Surprise. This time it's flood insurance. I've been posting about this issue for a couple of years. In 2008 FEMA mapped Putnam County. The maps are perhaps (how can I say this nicely) a little LESS than accurate.
It's a catch 22. You can't avoid lender flood insurance without a LOMA (Letter of Map Amendment) after you submit an Elevation Certificate to FEMA for review(this is a lengthy process). You can't get flood insurance in the amount you need from your insurance company unless you provide an Elevation Certificate putting you in the flood zone. So for a buyer it usually means delays in closing.
And for those sellers out there who own their homes outright, no mortgage and don't have or have to have flood insurance, if you are thinking of selling you may want to consider the LOMA anyway because your buyer just may be getting a mortgage and trust me on this, he can't get it without knowing if the property needs flood insurance or not. And the "flood cert" ordered by the lender is wrong wrong wrong more than 50% of the time because they just might be looking at those Less than accurate maps.
Today I talked with a seller and explained the new lender was requiring flood insurance even though the seller and I both know that his house is clearly above the "magic" number that puts it out of the flood zone. The insurance company for the purchaser will not issue flood insurance unless it is IN the flood zone. So our alternative is to get the Elevation Certificate (in the sellers name) and have him apply for the LOMA) which typically takes 60 to 90 days. BUMMER.
This seller was already paying for flood insurance after his own current lender made him two years ago. Could he have NOT paid it these past two years and NOT had a problem at closing? WHY yes!
If you live on Lake Sinclair and are currently paying for flood insurance you MAY NOT NEED IT. It is worth the cost of an elevation certificate, a few photographs and applying for a Letter of Map Amendment to get your property removed from the flood zone. Call me and I'll be happy to explain the process a little better if you don't understand what you need to do.
Or just call a local surveyor and get started. Out of the approximately 100 people I've assisted with getting started on this process only ONE owner still has to have flood insurance. And even if you don't have a mortgage and are not paying for flood insurance if you plan to sell your home, you should address this issue now. The seller I talked to today wishes he had known how to take care of this issue, and we'd be closing on Monday.
PS- it's not my seller (we represent the buyer on this property)
Also if you need to have a surveyor issue a "Certification letter" for your property or dwelling several are now doing this for less than the price of a full survey. This is a list of local surveyors from our "preferred" list.
Edwin Thompson 478-414-1241
J.E. Smith 478-452-1182
Ogletree and Chivers (Philip Chivers) 478-453-3454
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