I received the following from Hallie Benjamin, Business Development, FloodInsights and thought that it might be an interesting discussion topic:
- Are sinkholes prevalent in your area?
- Does proximity to a sinkhole affect value? How close?
- Would reporting sinkhole activity impact underwriting?
- Are you currently checking and reporting on sinkholes or other environmental hazards?
When people think of sinkhole prone areas in Florida, Pasco, Hernando and Hillsborough counties usually come to mind. Over the last few years though, sinkhole risk has been spreading geographically. According to a report by the state of Florida, 211 property insurers responded that claims increased from 2,360 in 2006 to 6,694 in 2010, totaling 24,671 claims. The total dollar amount of those claims was
approximately $1.4 billion dollars.
No one has been able to pinpoint the exact reason why sinkhole incidents have been on the rise in Florida. It is believed that heavy rains, massive pumping of groundwater and the creation of new buildings, streets and retention ponds have played a role. In order to help residents of Florida get a better handle on sinkhole activity, FloodInsights recently created the first commercial sinkhole report for appraisers, homeowners and mortgage & real estate professionals. By simply typing in an address, it’s possible to get a FEMA flood report and the following sinkhole information:
- Distance to closest sinkhole
- Number of sinkholes within a ½ mile radius
- Number of sinkholes within a 1 mile radius
- Sinkhole hazard map (aerial photo optional)
FloodInsights’ sinkhole database contains over 15,000 sinkholes and subsidence events and is continually updated. To learn more about this report, or to download a Florida sinkhole map, please visit: http://www.floodinsights.com/sinkholes.html
SOURCE: Hallie Benjamin, Business Development, FloodInsights.
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