Home Buying in 30033>Question Details

Cathy, Home Buyer in 30033

Help! Should we buy a home in a 100-year flood plain?

Asked by Cathy, 30033 Tue May 26, 2009

We have found a great house, unfortunately it's one of the lowest houses on the street and it's in an AE Zone / 100-year flood plain. The creek is 200 feet behind the house. The seller has lived in the house for 10 years and the house has never flooded. Our insurance company has quoted us $1658 per year for additional flood insurance. Does this seem high? Will it be hard for us to resell this house given the flood zone location?

Help the community by answering this question:


That sounds about right, you have to weigh the joys and benefits of living near water with the possibility it could flood.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 9, 2015
The statement "your home will flood sooner or later if its in a flood plain" simply is not true. I've owned two homes that were not originally in flood plains when I purchased them and were later rezoned to the 100-year because of changes in FEMA maps. Yes, that's right- just bc you purchase a home that is not in a flood plain doesn't mean that can't change. Happened to us TWICE. The first home was nowhere near any water and I owned for only 6 years. It never flooded. The second never flooded in over 40 years and has a creek bordering the property about half an acre away. And we love the property as its a unique and hard to come by acreage. Being in the flood plain does make it take longer to sell because too few people really understand the logistics of the zoning, others either don't want to pay or simply can't afford the premiums. And yes, of course some homes will actually flood. Only you can decide if you love the property enough to move forward, do your research to see if indeed the house actually has flooded in the past, how often and what they did to remedy it, and determine risks vs rewards of that specific property. I realize this post is from 2009 but I see A LOT of misinformation here. Oh yes, and lastly, for future potntial buyers that's a decent flood insurance rate. BewRe rates quoted by banks--those are the highest rates for forced plans if you dont get your own insurance and they have the highest rates there are.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 9, 2015
I wouldn't buy it. But that's just me.

Yes, it will be difficult to resell.

I don't know if $1,658 per year for flood insurance is reasonable. Call 2 or 3 other companies and compare quotes.

Hope that helps.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 2, 2013
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Fairfax, VA
big storm surges may continue on the coast in the east. buyer beware!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 2, 2013
Your home will flood sooner or later if it is on the 100 year flood plain.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 17, 2013
that's true. I think the 100 year may become the 20 year flood. that's a bad deal when your flooding outpaces your mortgage!!
Flag Mon Sep 2, 2013
Your insurance sounds about right.. I was looking at a home priced at $289,500 in NC. It was in AE Zone/100 year. Our mortgage was going to be $205,000. Depending on deductable and whether we insured contents, the insurance would run between $1500-$2100/year. So your price seems on target. Its expensive and I decided I could by a house worth $30K more for the cost of this insurance. I moved on and I suspect resale would certainly be affected by flood zone. Where I live most houses are not in flood zone. FEMA flood insurance really doesnt vary by insurance agent like regular insurance since its federally set.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Feb 25, 2011
Wonder if this house flooded in the "Great Flood" of fall 2009. My guess is yes! Folks, flood plains are designated for a reason.

Yes, it will be difficult to sell your home after it has flooded. Not impossible, just more difficult.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Feb 17, 2010
Hi Cathy,

I agree with all of the respondents. It is simply a matter of whether you really love the house and when you walk in you feel at home. The chances of the house flooding that badly are slim. However because of legal issues, insurance issues the fact there is a possibility must be disclosed.

As a personal experience, I too bought an old, cottage style house when I was in NC. My property line on one side of the house was a small creek which was much closer than 200 feet. The worst I ever had was some slight flodding of the backyard. And by that I mean the ground/grass became a little squishy. I never had a problem with the crawl space nor with dampness in the house itself. I loved that cute little house and the acre it sat on.

As far as the premium for your quoted flood insurance, that sounds high to me. Unless you are talking a very large house, assessed at a very high rate. I woud shop that around and see what else you could come up with. If you would like some suggestions please feel free to email me and I will send them to you.

I notice that you are talking the 30033 zip which I believe is Decatur. Where is the property located? Perhaps I could find out more info for you if I knew where this flood plain is located. Decatur is not an area I would guess to even have this issue.

Warm regards, Bob

Robert Carlough, Realtor
Gordon Street Realty
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 20, 2009
My biggest concern that I express to clients about homes in a flood plain are resale issues. This question you are asking, should you buy a home in a flood plain, will be the same question future buyers will ask when the time comes for you to sell. It will limit the pool of potential buyers, as many people will not even consider purchasing a home simply for this reason alone.
But if you love this house and expect to live there for many many years, it may be a good possibility for you, and hopefully you could get a great deal on it given the flood plain situation. If you do not know that you will live there for a long long time, I would have reservations.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 27, 2009

Your insurance will be higher but not that much higher unless the home is very expensive home. $1658 sounds like a million dollar home in a flood plain... or you are insuring a lot of jewelry.

You need to contact insurance AGENTS you can trust. If you are buying in a flood plain, you need REAL ADVICE. There's too many factors involved.

Let me know if you need a referral for an awesome insurance agent.

As for resell? Look at the other factors about the home. In some cases, it might not even be a 100 year flood plain anymore by the time you sell. You should get a discount on the home due to this and you should be able to pass the discount to someone else when you sell.

Georgia is not Florida. Not sure why the response would be relevant.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 27, 2009
Joshua Jarvis, Real Estate Pro in Duluth, GA
As somebody who lives in Flood prone Florida, that is extremely high for flood insurance.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 26, 2009

Odds of the home flooding are slim, however with all the rain we've been getting who knows!!

I think you answerd your own question. The added expense of flood insurance will be a concern not only for you, but buyers who look at the home when you decide to sell.

It really depends on the house. If it's great and it's what you have been looking for then go for it! There are lots of homes classifed to be in 100/year flood plain.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 26, 2009
Search Advice
Ask our community a question
Email me when…

Learn more

Copyright © 2015 Trulia, Inc. All rights reserved.   |  
Have a question? Visit our Help Center to find the answer