Last week, the U.S. Senate passed legislation to extend flood insurance funding. The bill cleared the House previously and is expected to be signed into law by the President. More than 129,000 REALTORS® representing about 15% of NAR members sent letters to their members of Congress in support of the extension. REALTORS® in Louisiana posted a 34% response rate to the Call for Actions leading the country in overall responses. The responses are important to being sure that homeowners have a voice when it comes to policies that impact homeownership.
The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) will remain in operation through November 30 though several issues remain to be addressed. More information will be made available as NAR continues its efforts for long-term authorization.
“We applaud lawmakers for taking this needed action to prevent disruptions to closings in thousands of communities across the country. Although the National Flood Insurance Program will be extended through November 30 when signed into law, the NFIP is in desperate need of reforms that will make it solvent and sustainable in the long term. The National Association of Realtors will continue fighting for these reforms as the next NFIP reauthorization discussions loom later this year,” said Elizabeth Mendenhall, NAR President.
In Louisiana, NFIP is the primary source of flood insurance with 500,000 policies. Real estate transactions would have been impacted had the extension not passed. "Over half a million people in Louisiana rely on this program, and I did everything in my power to keep it alive at least to get us through hurricane season," said U.S. Senator John Kennedy. "Going forward, I will continue to fight like hell to make sure that Louisianans and other NFIP users won’t have their insurance lapse due to absurd and unnecessary politics. Now that we have a little peace of mind and a short-term fix in place, we can turn our focus to working on long-term sustainable reforms to this program."
"If the program is not fundamentally reformed, it will continue to accumulate debt at an unsustainable rate," warns David Maurstad director of NFIP. “There isn’t any operation that can support a debt program that exceeds its ability to economically, efficiently and effectively use the funds that have to go towards interest payments," the NFIP's director said on a call discussing the scheme's 50th anniversary.
Read More: NFIP Set for Major Reform Under Maurstad's Lead
Louisiana REALTORS® will continue to update members as this issue moves forward.