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An estimated 23 percent of residential and commercial properties in the U.S. are at high or moderate risk of flooding but are outside of designated Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA) as identified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), according to data analysis from CoreLogic.

Property owners living within SFHA zones must have flood insurance if there is a federally insured mortgage, while those living outside SFHA zones are not required to have flood insurance. Many property owners choose not to carry flood insurance if it is not required even though their property may still be at risk of flood.

Nationally, more than 29 million properties (29,437,151), or 23 percent, are outside a designated SFHA despite being at what CoreLogic rates as high or moderate risk of flooding. At the state level:

  • Florida has the highest number of properties in this category at 5,055,821, or 54 percent of total properties.
  • Texas has 3,292,082 properties, or 31 percent, and California has 3,114,462 properties, or 29 percent.
  • Looking at only the percentage of properties outside an SFHA, which are at high or moderate risk, Arizona has the highest at 68 percent, followed by Florida at 54 percent and Louisiana at 49 percent.

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