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Integrating 'The Flood Discussion' into Your Real Estate Practice

March 03 2021

cartofront DYK 41m propertiesRecent studies indicate that 41 million homes across the US are at risk of flooding -- a number significantly higher than is indicated by FEMA flood maps.

This new data highlights a nationwide cause for concern for homeowners, including many in areas previously thought to be at low risk.

In South Florida, as many as 1 in 3 residential properties are in danger of sustaining flood damage.

Leading Realtors are getting ahead of the curve by integrating "The Flood Discussion" into their real estate practice.

Here are five takeaways to integrate flood into your work with your customers, to make you the most knowledgeable, confident, and profitable Realtor in your market.

1. On the Buyer Side, include flood as a housing criteria

We are used to setting criteria based on location, pricing, number of bedrooms, etc. Flooding, for example, has historically been an afterthought.

With a 30-year investment — typically the biggest investment of our customer's life — it's critical to put flooding on the list of criteria, especially with the frequency of storms all across the country.

Note: while flood has historically been a 'coastal' issue, flooding is occurring more frequently across the interior of the US.

2. On the Seller Side, do your research on the listing property

More and more, the question of flooding and impact of weather is going to come up regarding the listing.

So get out in front and ask your owners the 'tough questions' about the history of flooding and other climate-related issues. It will be better to know the facts, so you can present them professionally, accurately, and appropriately in the marketing of the property.

3. Understand the 'total cost of flood ownership'

As we evaluate properties with the customer — listing price, taxes, utilities, homeowners insurance — it's important to integrate new terms like Flood Zone, Flood Risk and Flood Insurance.

Note: It's important to remember that flood insurance is NOT included in homeowners insurance, and it is a separate insurance policy.

Yes, no one likes to add costs. Yet, given that one storm can cause $$$$$ of damage in the blink of an eye, it's critical to evaluate a property's risk profile with your customer's risk tolerance.

Across much of South Florida and the United States, home buyers can secure 'peace of mind' flood insurance for reasonable rates.

4. Investigate the two flood insurance options: NFIP and Private Insurance

Most Americans are aware of NFIP — which stands for National Flood Insurance Program, managed by FEMA. Based on a flood mapping system, NFIP has standard coverage limits of $250,000 for buildings and $100,000 for personal property based on the flood zone where the property is located.

In the South Florida market, for example, more than 30 private insurance companies have begun to offer flood insurance over the last several years.

Private insurance companies generally price flood insurance based on a property's latitude and longitude coordinates, as well as over 200 data points to calculate the exact price-risk profile per property.

To better understand these differences and the options available for a property, consider getting one NFIP and one Private Flood Insurance Quote.

5. From Contract-to-Close, engage a licensed flood insurance expert

Let's be honest, Flood Insurance is confusing and is best left to the experts who practice it each and every day.

Most importantly, engaging a licensed flood insurance professional separates any potential issue of Errors and Omissions from the REALTOR® and their customer's real estate transaction.

cartofront flood discussionAcadian Insurance offers a free consultation for all Miami REALTORS® and their customers. In 15 minutes, the Acadian Team can provide you with all the knowledge you and your customers need to make smart, informed, confident decisions.

If you are interested in learning more, access our free eBook: Everything You Always Wanted To Know About Flood Insurance* (*But Were Afraid To Ask)

CartoFront is a technology services company that is simplifying flood insurance for REALTORS(R), their clients, and insurance agents. If you are interested in learning how you can bring CartoFront to your MLS for free, please contact [email protected]