Realtors endorse House flood insurance extension

Realtors endorse House flood insurance extension
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The National Association of Realtors (NAR) endorsed a House plan to renew and revamp the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) after holding out for several changes.

NAR said Thursday that the group representing more than 1.2 million real estate agents and industry employees, backed the bill after lawmakers reduced proposed increases to flood insurance rates and preserved a policy that “protects homeowners from significant rate increases when a flood map changes.”

NAR President William E. Brown praised House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas) and Financial Services Housing and Insurance Subcommittee Chairman Sean DuffySean DuffyLobbying world CNN's Ana Navarro to host Biden roundtable on making 'Trump a one-term president' Bottom line MORE (R-Wis.) for working with the group on fixes to the bill.


“The changes to the 21st Century Flood Reform Act will help give certainty to homeowners who have brought their property to code and have done their part to protect it against flood risk,” Brown said.

“It’s a fair and reasonable approach that recognizes the need for accessible, affordable flood insurance, while taking us one step closer towards reauthorization.”

NAR’s endorsement comes at a critical time for the House. Congress has until Oct. 1 to reauthorize the NFIP, first established in the 1960s to provide flood insurance to at-risk homes. Lawmakers are seizing on the deadline as a chance to cut the NFIP’s $24 billion debt and shift more flood insurance customers to a burgeoning private market.

Private flood insurance was largely nonexistent when the NFIP was established in 1968, and Republicans are eager to reduce taxpayer exposure to risky homes by easing federal policy holders into private plans.

The House reform plan is currently stalled in the House Financial Services Committee amid bipartisan opposition from more than 20 lawmakers.

Brown said NAR is “eager to see this legislation progress quickly.”