Flood of higher insurance rates worry homeowners - WFLA News Channel 8

Flood of higher insurance rates worry homeowners

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SEMINOLE, FL (WFLA) -

People filled every seat in the St. Petersburg College Seminole auditorium. Many were homeowners, fearful the new flood insurance rates will put them under, financially. "I don't have that kind of budget. I've been out of work for a couple of years, disabled anyway, so it's just very difficult," said Melissa Haigh.

The tidal wave of rate increases are coming to help balance the National Flood Insurance program, which is running $24 billion in debt because of recent storms. Some policy holders will see increases, starting next Tuesday. Only Congress can stop it from happening.

Pinellas Property appraiser, Pam Dubov says the real estate market is already suffering in beach towns, the same areas that led the recovery from the recession. She wants congress to make a change. "Try to write into the law some kind of program to assist with affordability or to spread this out over a longer period of time."

Pinellas County truly is ground zero, with more than 50,000 policies, now subsidized by the government, set to go up in price. The real estate biz is in a bind. "We really don't know what to say, as far as, we know it's going to be higher, but we don't know how much higher, it's just the unknown that's scaring people," said Real Estate professional, Doug Swain of Remax Preferred.

The fuse is lit, with homeowner's only hope in congress. If you want to write them a letter, follow this link:

http://www.tampabaybeaches.com/tampa_bay_beaches_events/featured_events.aspx


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