From beachfront condos to landlocked subdivisions, flood zones are everywhere. In fact, almost 41 million Americans live in flood zones, according to a study published in the journal Environmental Research Letter.
Just a couple months into the official start of hurricane season, which runs from June 1 to November 30, many people in storm-prone areas are mindful of the destruction flooding can cause.
Last year served as a major wake-up call in disaster preparedness. Three Category 4 hurricanes made landfall in one season, and Hurricane Harvey broke records for the most rainfall from a U.S. cyclone, measuring 50 inches in some areas. The National Flood Insurance Program, or NFIP, paid more than $8 billion to flood insurance policyholders in 2017 alone.
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Here's five important things homebuyers should know before they buy in a flood zone.