Most people don't think residence type plays a big impact on Pell City flood insurance rates. However whether you are using a property as a primary, secondary, seasonal, or investment property can play a major role on your Pell City flood insurance.

We just spoke with an insurance agent this week where their client had gotten a flood quote from another company that was significantly less. Actually about $2500 less

road flooding

But why?

Aren't all flood insurance rates the same?

Yes they are but rates are only as accurate as the information that is put in there by the agent.

There are a couple ways that occupancy type plays a role on flood insurance rates in Pell City Alabama.

  1. Surcharge
  2. Rating factors

Let's look at surcharges first. When it comes to the National Flood Insurance Program and flood insurance in Pell City there is a surcharge called HFIAA also known as the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act. This act put into place April 1, 2015 adds a surcharge to each National Flood Insurance policy. On a primary residence this surcharge is $25 and on a non primary its a $250 surcharge.

However where the big difference can come into play is the rating tables. Lets look at two homes in Pell City both built before the first flood map also referred to as Pre-Firm properties.

Lets say both have no basements but one is a primary residence and one is not. For the primary residence you would using rating 2a that has a rating factor of 1.18 for every $100 in coverage which would give you a rate of $1180 for a $100,000. Compared to that non primary residence that has a factor of 3.85. That would give you a rate of $3850 for the non primary residence. Its important that things on the elevation certificate can give certain rating credits that can bring this rate down, but this should give you a good idea of the rates.

So as you can see having the wrong occupancy type can have a major impact on your flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program.


Don't get too down if your residence is not your primary residence as many lake homes in Pell City are not.


There is a private market for flood insurance in Pell City that does not use these same factors in determining rates for properties. In fact we recently helped some residents in Pell City save more than 40% by switching from the National Flood Insurance Program to a private flood insurance policy.

Its important to understand the strict guidelines FEMA has in making this switch. If you want to learn more about how to make this switch or exactly what the guidelines are then click the link below.

Understand switching flood insurance


You can also visit our YouTube channel or Facebook Flood Insurance Guru where we do daily flood education videos. Remember we have an educational background in flood mitigation so we can help you understand your flood insurance, flood risk, and mitigating your property against future flooding.


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Chris Greene


Chris Greene

President of The Flood Insurance Guru
M.S. in Emergency Management with a focus in Flood Mitigation