More than 3,000 miles of creeks and streams run through Mecklenburg County, and heavy rain storms can send the water spilling over the banks and onto nearby properties.
Realtor Rufus Hutchinson knows just how much this worries new home buyers.
“If you see the word floodplain or flood zone, people get very nervous about properties,” he said.
A new online tool may alleviate some of those concerns.
Charlotte Mecklenburg Storm Water Services provides enhanced floodplain mapping on its website.
People can see how often a property might flood, and even how high the water will rise. Realtors are using the maps to evaluate true risk for both sellers and new home buyers.
The old floodplain map shows a neighborhood that sits beside Little Sugar Creek as vulnerable to inundation from the creek, but the new enhanced mapping shows that there is less than a half-percent chance that the waters will reach the homes.
Knowing the real threat of flooding makes a big difference in the checkbook.
Home buyers can save an extra $200 to $2,000 on flood insurance for a lower-risk property.
“This gives them the opportunity to assess the risk, to find out what the cost is going to be if they want to go forward with it,” Hutchinson said.
To see a property’s flood threat on the storm water services site, click here.