Additional Flood Mapping Resources
Last week’s tip about a resource you can add to your website so a client or prospect can check to see if their property is located in a flood prone area generated a number of comments and suggestions. I decided to provide a couple more resources in this week’s tip.
Rita Hollada wanted to make sure agents knew about Floodsmart.gov (the official site of the NFIP). This is also a free site and has the capability to assess risk. Because it is a sponsored site of the NFIP, the data is continuously updated. Additionally, there is much more information for clients and agents alike.
Stu Durland from Seely & Durland Insurance in Warwick, New York, also uses MyFloodZone.com. There is a small fee associated with using this site but he says it has come in very handy when there is a dispute on the flood zone. They have been very helpful in reviewing it with them and ensuring accuracy. Plus, the client gets an official report back.
Another good resource is Google Earth. When you add the National Flood Hazard Layer, available from FEMA, you will be able to view flood zone data as an overlay on the Google Earth maps. There are a number of different views available to help you visualize where the official flood zones are located.
Flood mapping data layers include: Status map (draws areas for which there is data); Status of digital flood hazard data coverage; Regional overview (draws flood hazard and other data appropriate for a regional map); Special Flood Hazard Areas and other zones; Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) to name just a few.
The data is provided by FEMA and there is no cost for using this information with Google Earth.