Under Water

Flood insurance rate hikes up to 999 percent slam Florida

Never mind actual floods. Floridians say huge jumps in flood insurance bills are trapping them in their homes.

How big? Try 999 percent.

Ask Aaron Greenwood. He purchased a home this year figuring the flood premium was $4,397 a year. He never imagined a a nearly 1,000 percent increase to $43,885.

“I would not have purchased this home if I had been aware of the increased flood insurance premiums,” said Greenwood, 43. “I cannot pay the new premium. I cannot sell this home with a flood insurance rate of over $43,000 a year.”

The married military veteran with two children in Pinellas County provides a striking example from a “friend of the court” brief Florida officials filed this week in a case Mississippi has brought against the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Florida has more properties than any other state affected by the sharpest immediate increases, with more than 268,000 including more than 4,000 in Palm Beach County.

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