If you haven't heard, the FEMA flood maps are in the process of being updated for this area. The new drafts were recently released, and this past week Q&A open houses were held in Sarasota, Venice, and North Port. It is important if you live in the area or are considering purchasing soon to keep in mind that changes are pending but will not fully take effect until next year. The timeline published on the Sarasota County website says:
® December 2014* — Preliminary flood maps released
® January-February 2015* — Start of 90-day public comment period (for filing of appeals and protests)
® May 2015* — FEMA , federal review begins when 90-day public comment/appeal period ends
® Early 2016* — New flood maps take effect; new flood insurance requirements also take effect
* Date subject to change pending completion of review process.
So, if you already own a home, be sure to check the status prior to the end of the appeal period in case you find it necessary to pursue that option.
I went to the meeting in Venice on Wednesday evening to ask some questions in person. The venue where it was held was absolutely packed! I showed up early and there was a line out the door to check in, and many people were already seated inside waiting their turn for an individual property look up to be done by a representative. Oddly enough, I heard that the Sarasota meeting was not nearly so well attended. But, I digress...in Venice, it was a very well run, efficient and informative session. I had to wait for some time until my number was called, but not nearly as long as I expected when I first heard how many numbers were still ahead of mine. When my time came, of course, I wanted to know all of the changes that will be taking place. But naturally, that was not an option, so I asked about a couple specific properties for myself and for family that was out of town at the time. Then, I asked generally about the West Villages neighborhoods of Gran Paradiso and IslandWalk.
To preface, if you live in either of these neighborhoods, please consult the drafted maps or other authoritative source to be sure your specific property is or is not affected. The representative at the open house, though, said these two neighborhoods are predominantly what they call "in the 2%," which means considered to be a moderate risk - where flood insurance is recommended but not required. That is really good news! It also appeared to me that the Mattamy property that is between River Road and the communities of Gran Paradiso and IslandWalk will be considered high risk, so that upcoming development may not pose as much competition as was previously thought. Still, I could be wrong. I did not ask about that area specifically. It was just highlighted on the map that the representative pulled up.
Once again, please consult an authoritative source regarding your specific owned or considered property, and if you are looking in either of these fine communities, give me a call! Let me know if I can be of any assistance.
Hope that all helps to clarify some. I would be happy to answer any specific questions for you. If you'd like more information on anything in particular, just let me know. Also, I would love any feedback on what you would like to see for future blog topics.
Comment or email me at: email@example.com.
Thanks for reading and have a blessed day!
If you are considering purchasing a home in this community, please let me assist you. My services and extensive resources are of no cost to you, and in most instances, I am able to save home buyers some money. I even offer (*with a couple exclusions) $500 towards closing costs to my clients*. I do not work for any of the wonderful builders in the West Villages Improvement District, or any others for that matter. My services and information (including the resources provided on all of my websites) are wholly independent of these developers. No other independent professional is more knowledgeable about this community, and enlisting me to assist with your transaction serves also to fund these resources to keep them available for you and others on an ongoing basis.
Please, check out my website, and contact me for more information!
Look forward to hearing from you!
Aileen “Ali” Johnston, MHA
(currently working on an MBA in Real Estate)
Realtor®, Hoover Realty