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Welcome to the Flood Zone!

A nationally distributed resource for those interested in flood zone issues, land surveying, real estate, history, and educational opportunities. If you no longer wish to receive this newsletter, simply click the unsubscribe link in the footer of this message.

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Explore Real Estate Jim

Message from Jim

Every December we all tend to exhale and have thoughts of relief that we made it through another year, but at the same time, realize another year has quickly passed. As each year passes, we further realize we are not really here for very long and start to worry more about time wasted. We make New Year’s Resolutions with intention to better our lives, and the word prosperous seems to surface as one year comes to a close, and another is born – “Hope you have a happy and prosperous new year!” Of course, we all want prosperity, but have we put too much emphasis on prosperity equaling more monetary wealth?

By definition, prosperity also includes words like flourishing, successful, thriving, and advancing, so attaching this term to personal value seems to make more sense. For most of us, our needs are satisfied daily without any effort to a point of boredom, so we unfortunately perceive many wants as needs. We find ourselves always wanting more even though we understand having more material possessions does not equal more happiness. Any shortages we do have, money seldom can buy.

Take care of the people in your lives, and prosperity will occur, regardless of how you personally define this word. Create value in your relationships by sincerely giving more of yourself. Be kind to everyone. Figure out what is really important and has real value. Happy New Year and wishing 2015 is very prosperous for all! May each day be filled with much health, happiness, and love!

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update

Insurance Corner

Removing Barriers to More Private Flood Insurance

Insurance Journal, December 1, 2014

A House Financial Services Subcommittee recently held a hearing to focus attention on proposed H.R. 4558, the Flood Insurance Market Parity and Modernization Act of 2014, to clarify that private coverage satisfies the requirement for purchasing flood insurance under federally-backed home mortgages.

This article breaks down the challenges involved in privatizing the flood insurance market. One such concern is stated by an insurance agent in Florida: "Banks question if the flood policies written by private carriers will satisfy the mortgage requirement for homes located in a high-risk flood zone. Agents are concerned about E&O [errors and omissions] exposure for selling policies that might not meet the federal mortgage requirement and the potential exposure if the agent sells a policy that negatively impacts the insured’s ability to get subsidized NFIP coverage in the future.” Read more!

Below is a link to an older article, but we think it provides appropriate context to the purpose of the National Flood Insurance Program:

"Why is the Government in the Flood Insurance Business?"

By David Kestenbaum, NPR, January 24, 2013

"There's a quick, one-word explanation for why the federal government started selling flood insurance: [Hurricane] Betsy...A few years after Betsy, in 1968, the government decided it would take on the job of selling flood insurance. Some people hated this idea. If private insurance companies wouldn't sell policies to people who wanted to live in flood zones, they argued, why should the government?" Read more!

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canada border

Click on the photo to view the YouTube video.

History Corner

Ever wonder how the United States-Canada border was established? Watch this quirky video about the bizarre way that land was divided by a deforested "no touching zone". Land surveyors have placed over 900 monuments in "as straight a line as you could expect a pre-GPS civilization could make."

Video Reference:
"Canada & The United States: Bizarre Borders Part 2"
Published by CGP Gray, on Jun. 5, 2013.
http://www.CGPGrey.com/

prelim

Flood Fact

Remember: Flood hazard data shown on the Preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Maps can help insurance agents see how their clients may be affected in the future, but policies cannot be written using preliminary data because it is not yet in effect. If your community has not adopted the preliminary data, the data from the currently effective Flood Insurance Rate Map is the only data that should be used to make flood zone determinations and insurance policy decisions.

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house elevation

Resources

A Closer Look at Risk Reduction

The image to the right provides an excellent visual representation of common floodplain management concepts pertaining to mitigation. This particular example shows how a home can be elevated above the predicted reach of a flood.

Lowest Floor, Base Flood Elevation (BFE), Freeboard, and Flood Openings are terms that are mentioned often but may not be well understood by many real estate consultants.

A comprehensive list of NFIP terminology can be found on FEMA's website.

Photo from Reducing Coastal Risk on the East and Gulf Coasts, National Academy of Sciences, 2014

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albert

Learning Events

COMING IN JANUARY 2015 We are teaming up with Kristen Grant, Marine Extension Associate, of Maine Sea Grant to offer an educational program for real estate licensees, titled "Coastal Real Estate: Understanding Flood Zones and Recognizing Flood Resilient Properties".

Take your continuing education to the next level, and learn how to assess flood risk both on paper, and on the ground.

BTB Course Flyer

Also coming up in January, we will be presenting "Land Surveying, Flood Zones, and Real Estate", an educational program approved by the Maine Real Estate Commission for 3 continuing education credits for real estate licensees. Click on the image to download the full program flyer.

Sponsor: Beyond the Boundary, the Educational Component of Nadeau Land Surveys
Where: Greater Portland Board of Realtors, 2271 Congress Street, Portland, ME.
Time: 9:00 AM -12:00 PM
Fee: $35
Maximum Registration: 28 people

Registration is not yet open, but if you are interested in taking this course, please contact nikki@nadeaulandsurveys.com to be added to our Learning Event Notification List.

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snowflake

Fun Fact

The biggest snowflake ever recorded was 15 inches wide and 8 inches thick. This happened in Ft. Keogh Montana in 1887 (Guinness Book). A snowflake can be a single ice crystal, a cluster of them, or a large aggregation of them that forms a mass mid-air.

December Flood Funny

flood date cartoon
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