What with the heavy rains and severe storms seen in various parts of the US over the last week, thanks to Irene, flooding is one of the primary concerns of home and business property owners across the nation.
But it's not only them. The National Association of Realtors has also become quite concerned about flooding recently. More specifically, the NAR wants to see the National Flood Insurance Program reauthorized.
Typically, most homes are not covered for storm-related flood damage in their home insurance policies. In order to be protected against flooding, homeowners need to purchase a special flood insurance policy separately. The NAR says that flood insurance is the only possible coverage homeowners can afford to protect them from hurricane-associated flooding, and these polices must be bought through the NFIP. However, the NFIP is set to expire at the end of September this year, something that is set to put millions of homeowners in danger.
Ron Phipps, President of the NAR, stated that:
"As leading advocates for housing and homeownership issues, the NAR asserts that the NFIP is absolutely vital to having a real estate market that functions properly. It guarantees millions of homeowners access to cheap flood insurance."
Currently, around 5.6 million US homeowners and businesses obtain their flood protection through the NFIP, says the NAR. Should the NFIP program expire at the end of the month, this would be the tenth such occasion in the last three years that's happened.
Mr. Phipps said that Congress needs to hurry through new legislation for the NFIP's reauthorization as soon as possible, in order to end the stopgap approach which has seen numerous lapses and extensions of the program's authority over the last couple of years.