With free market laws, homeowners can get flood insurance from any insurer in the market, including the National Flood Insurance Program, which offers many the only source of coverage that meets federally related mortgage requirements. However, if a homeowners leaves NFIP for another insurer, then tries to return some time later to the NFIP, homeowners could face much higher rates.

This week the House of Representatives passed a bill that would force the NFIP to offer more reasonable rates to homeowners returning to the program after previously using a private market insurer.

"Consumers who wish to purchase insurance in the private market should have the freedom to do so,” said National Association of Realtors President Tom Salomone. “This legislation will help foster a vibrant private flood insurance market while giving consumers the flexibility to return to the NFIP at a reasonable cost if they choose to.”

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