Local, Mortgage Business

Town of Bethany Beach – Flood Protection Information

TOWN OF BETHANY BEACH

FLOOD PROTECTION INFORMATION

Many areas in the Town of Bethany Beach are low lying and/or are located in Special Hazard Flood areas (SHFA) and are prone to flooding during storms and heavy rains.  Most areas lying north or Garfield Parkway (Route 26) and east of Route 1 are in coastal AE and AO zones. Properties fronting on the ocean may be in a Coastal V and/or AO zones.  Areas west of Route 1, specifically in Bethany West and Turtle Walk have recently been added to the SHFA and are in an AE zone.   If you are in a SHFA, you should know about services available to you and how to protect yourself and your property from flooding.

FLOOD SERVICES

The Town of Bethany Beach offers the following services:

  1. Flood Maps and information have been provided to the South Coastal Library and are available for review.
  1. The Building Department, located on the first floor of Town Hall also has current Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) and can assist with determining a site’s FIRM zone and the base flood elevation or depth.  The Building Inspector can be reached at 302-539-8780.
  1. Handouts from FEMA concerning questions about the National Flood Insurance Program are available from the Building Department.
  1. Completed elevation certificates for buildings in Special Hazard Flood areas constructed in the floodplain since 1992 are on file in the Building Department.
  1. The Town of Bethany Beach uses the CodeRED Emergency Notification System which includes the feature CodeRED Weather Warning.  The CodeRED Weather Warning will automatically call citizens when severe weather (tornado, flash flood, and severe thunderstorm) warnings are issued by the National Weather Service for your address.  The CodeRED Weather Warning System calls only when warnings are issued and only if your address is in the path of the storm.  Bethany Beach residents can also sign up for CodeRED Weather Warning while signing up for CodeRED. Citizens can sign up on the Town’s web site.
  1. If requested, the Building Inspector and/or the Director of the Public Works Department will visit a property to review its flood problems and explain ways to prevent flood damage.  The Building Inspector can be reached at 302-539-8780.  Public Works can be reached at 302-539-1339.

FLOOD INSURANCE

The Town of Bethany Beach participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) and flood insurance is available at a reduced rate to all homeowners in the Bethany Beach area.  The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has approved a 10 percent rate reduction on the cost of flood insurance for all properties in Special hazard Flood areas in the town.  The Town of Bethany Beach received the NFIP rate reduction for implementing measures aimed at reducing property damage caused by flooding and increasing public awareness of flood risk.

Bethany Beach received a Class 8 rating on the NFIP’s Community Rating System. The Community Rating System is a voluntary incentive program that recognizes community floodplain management activities that exceed minimum program requirements.  Contact the Town Building Department for additional information.

FLOODPLAIN DEVELOPEMENT / PERMITS REQUIRE 

In order to prevent flood damage, all development in the floodplain is required to meet current National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) standards for flood proofing and all new work is required to first obtain a building permit from the Town.  Those properties located ocean front may also be required to submit plans and an application to the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Controls (DNREC) for review and approval.  Building permit applications can be found on the Town’s website.

SUBSTANTIAL IMPROVEMENT/DAMAGE REQUIREMENTS

Existing buildings with proposed “substantial improvements” or repair of “substantial damage” are also required to be brought into compliance with NFIP requirements for new construction.

Substantial improvement is defined as any combination of reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition or other improvement of a structure taking place during the ten-year period immediately preceding the date the permit application is

submitted, the cumulative cost of which equals or exceeds 50% of the reasonably estimated market value of the structure before the improvement or repair is started.  This term includes structures which have incurred “Substantial Damage”, regardless of the actual repair work performed.  The term does not, however, include any project for improvement of a structure to correct existing violations of state and local health, sanity or safety code specifications which have been identified prior to the application for a development permit by the local code enforcement official and which are the minimum necessary to assure safe living conditions.

Substantial damage is defined as damage of any origin sustained by a structure whereby the cost of restoring the structure to its before-damage condition would equal or exceed 50%of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred.

FOR YOUR REFERENCE

Town of Bethany Beach website – www.townofbethanybeach.com

The Town code is available from this site and Chapter 453. Flood Damage Prevention contains definitions and information related to construction in flood prone areas

NFIP insurance information –www.floodsmart.gov

You are able to search for an insurance agent, learn about risk and see what flood damage really costs

FEMA – www.fema.gov

This is FEMA’s website used to get the most recent Flood Insurance Rate Map and Flood Insurance Study information throughout the nation.  Available non-regulatory Flood Risk Products can also be downloaded from here.

Ready.gov – www.ready.gov/

The online tool created to assist everyone in creating a ready kit for evacuation from home or work.

Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control – www.dnrec.delaware.gov

 

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NFIP Flood Insurance Changes – Effective April 1, 2016

Flood Insurance ProgramAs a realtor or property owners, here’s what you need to know about some of the significant changes taking effect April 1, 2016. (click the link to a Flood Insurance newsletter with more details).

Reminder:  You should contact your favorite flood insurance agent for more details and clarifications for specific properties.  This is general information presented as a service to keep you informed as a real estate professional.

Updated Premium Rates

  • For most policyholders, the premium increase cap will be set at 18%. However, there are additional increases to non-premium fees and surcharges that could result in a net change in the amount paid by a policyholder that exceeds 18%.
  • For non-primary residential properties (i.e. second homes and investment properties), premiums will be increased 25% annually until they reach full-risk rates, as required by Section 100205 of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012.
  • Other properties seeing 25% annual premium increases are Severe Repetitive Loss (SRL) properties, substantially damaged/substantially improved properties, and – effective April 1st – business properties.

New Rating Methodology for Preferred Risk Properties and the Newly Mapped Procedure

The rating methodology for all Preferred Risk Policies (PRPs) and Newly Mapped policies is being revised effective April 1, 2016. This new methodology is being introduced in order to comply with Section 6 of Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act (HFIAA) regarding properties newly mapped into the SFHA. This new methodology is being introduced in order to comply with Section 6 of Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act (HFIAA) regarding properties newly mapped into the SFHA.

Elimination of Subsidies for Certain Lapsed Policies

FEMA will prohibit the use of Pre-FIRM subsidized rates for policies reinstating coverage for Pre-FIRM buildings that were previously insured by the NFIP where the NFIP coverage is reinstated by means of a payment received more than 90 days after expiration or cancellation of the policy.  This same prohibition will apply to policies rated under the Newly Mapped procedure in the event of a lapse.

Reduction of Coverage Clarified

A FEMA policy issuance published in 2005 that changed the reformation and reduction clause in the NFIP’s Standard Flood Insurance Policy will be revoked on April 1. The policy issuance had previously eliminated the backdating of reformation of coverage and called for only prospective corrections – meaning they would only be adjusted going forward.  But now prospective reformation will only apply to misratings for incorrect flood zones or base flood elevations.  Going forward, if there is loss in the current term and the discovery of the misrating is 60 days or less prior to the renewal, the correction will simply be made as of the upcoming renewal date.

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Flood Insurance Information – Bethany Beach

Town of Bethany Beach

The following information was recently sent to all Bethany Beach town residents and I thought it would be a handy reference and a good summary for clients and realtors:

Many areas in the Town of Bethany Beach are low lying and/or are located in Special Hazard Flood areas (SHFA) and are prone to flooding during storms and heavy rains.  Most areas lying north or Garfield Parkway (Route 26) and east of Route 1 are in coastal AE and AO zones. Properties fronting on the ocean may be in a Coastal V and/or AO zones.  Areas west of Route 1, specifically in Bethany West and Turtle Walk have recently been added to the SHFA and are in an AE zone.   If you are in a SHFA, you should know about services available to you and how to protect yourself and your property from flooding.

FLOOD SERVICES

The Town of Bethany Beach offers the following services:

  1. Flood Maps and information have been provided to the South Coastal Library and are available for review.
  2. The Building Department, located on the first floor of Town Hall also has current Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) and can assist with determining a site’s FIRM zone and the base flood elevation or depth.  The Building Inspector can be reached at 302-539-8780.
  3. Handouts from FEMA concerning questions about the National Flood Insurance Program are available from the Building Department.
  4. Completed elevation certificates for buildings in Special Hazard Flood areas constructed in the floodplain since 1992 are on file in the Building Department.

Continue reading

Local

Bethany Beach Flood Insurance Information

Flood Insurance ProgramThe following information was provided by the Town of Bethany Beach regarding flood insurance:

FLOOD PROTECTION INFORMATION

Many areas in the Town of Bethany Beach are low lying and/or are located in Special Hazard Flood areas and are prone to flooding during storms and heavy rains.  Most areas lying north of Garfield Parkway (Route 26) and east of Route 1 are in a coastal AE zone. Properties fronting on the ocean may be in a coastal V zone.  If you are in a flood plain, you should know about services available to you and how to protect yourself and your property from flooding.

FLOOD SERVICES

The Town of Bethany Beach offers the following services: Continue reading

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National Hurricane Center to Issue New Storm Surge Map

Beginning with the 2014 Atlantic hurricane season, NOAA’s National Hurricane Center (NHC) will issue the Potential Storm Surge Flooding Map for those areas along the Gulf and Atlantic coasts of the United States at risk of storm surge from a tropical cyclone. 

Developed over the course of several years in consultation with emergency managers, broadcast meteorologists, and others, this new map will show:

  • Geographical areas where inundation from storm surge could occur; and
  • How high above ground the water could reach in those areas.

The Potential Storm Surge Flooding Map is an experimental National Weather Service product that provides valuable new information on the storm surge hazard associated with tropical cyclones.

Storm surge is often the greatest threat to life and property from a hurricane. However, many people do not understand this term or the threat it represents.

Here are some things to know about this map:

  • The first map will usually be issued at the same time as the initial hurricane watch or, in some cases, with a tropical storm watch. The map is based on the latest forecast track and intensity for the tropical cyclone, and takes into account likely forecast errors.
  • The map shows inundation levels that have a 10-percent chance of being exceeded, and can therefore be thought of as representing a reasonable worst-case scenario for any given location.
  • The map is subject to change every six hours in association with every new NHC full advisory package. Due to the processing time required to produce the map, it will not be available until about 45 to 60 minutes following the advisory release.

The map will be part of an interactive display made available on the NHC website (http://www.hurricanes.gov) in situations where hurricane watches and warning are in effect for portions of the continental U.S. 

The map will be experimental for at least two years, during which time comments from users will be solicited and gathered. Dissemination of the underlying raw data, including the provision of shapefiles, will not be available during the experimental period. At the conclusion of the experimental phase, based on the input, NHC will determine if the map would become an operational product.

For additional information, please visit the NHC Storm Surge website: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/surge.

A variety of storm surge resources, including the “Storm Surge Can Be Deadly – 10 Tips to Be Ready” fact sheet, are available at: http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/surge/resources.php.

 

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Flood Insurance Reform Heads to the President for Signature

The Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act Heads to the White House!  From NAR: On March 13, 2014, the United States Senate voted 72-22 to approve the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act (H.R. 3370). The Senate acted quickly to pass the bill as amended by the House to avoid the need for a conference committee to reconcile any differences. The new bill further reins in and holds the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) accountable for the Biggert-Waters implementation issues.

As passed, the bill repeals FEMA’s authority to increase premium rates at time of sale or new flood map, and refunds the excessive premium to those who bought a property before FEMA warned them of the rate increase. The bill limits premium increases to 18% annually on newer properties and 25% for some older ones. Additionally, the bill adds a small assessment on policies until everyone is paying full cost for flood insurance. President Obama is expected to sign the bill into law when it arrives at the White House. Continue reading

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Upcoming Changes to Flood Insurance Maps for Town of Bethany Beach

From the Town of Bethany Beach, DE:

In May of this year, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) distributed revised preliminary flood insurance rate maps (FIRM’s) to all coastal areas in Sussex County. 

The preliminary maps for the Town of Bethany Beach show significant changes and are proposed to be adopted in August, 2014.

Currently, approximately 60% of the Town is located in a Special Hazard Flood Area (SHFA).   The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) uses the 100- year flood as the basis for mapping, setting insurance rates and applying regulations to minimize future flood damage.  The 100 year flood has a 1% chance of occurring or being exceeded each year. Properties in the Town are located in the following SHFA zones: Continue reading