Amherst updates flood insurance rate maps

Banks require flood insurance in order to finance homes in flood zones

AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – Some home insurance bills could be going much higher in Hampshire County.

The town is updating its flood insurance rate maps for the first time since 1983. Some homes could now be located in a flood plain.

New technologies used by a consulting firm and FEMA created more accurate mapping of floodable areas around Amherst.

The town is calling on the public to check their work. People can review and comment on the maps at Amherst Town Hall until July 26.

If your home falls in a flood zone, you could be required to buy flood insurance. It could be a huge unexpected cost.

“We have been finding that customers who are in a flood zone, which is the highest rated can be up to $2,000,” Tracey Benison, President of Encharter Insurance said. “So it can be a significant expense and something that is not expected by a customer.”

Banks require flood insurance in order to finance homes in flood zones.

Though the topography is more accurate, the town wants residents to look at the map to make sure street names are properly identified, and to voice concern if you don’t agree with the flood zone designations.

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