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When you select Blue Rock Flood Services as your flood hazard determination service, you can enjoy peace-of-mind by knowing that you are dealing with one of the original vendors registered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). We have been providing this service since February of 1993, well before the passage of the National Flood Insurance Reform Act of November 1994 (as amended) when flood hazard determinations became a mandatory requirement in the lending process.

Since then, a number of other companies have formed or, in some cases, simply entered into the flood determination business as a reseller with no experience whatsoever, via third party web sites which rely on questionable software packages. With us, you get the real thing. We are a genuine Flood Zone Determination (FZD) company . . . not a here-today/gone-tomorrow company. In order to protect our clients’ portfolios and our reputation, we continue our tradition of delivering our clients the very best through time tested hands-on researching and mapping techniques, and we only use technology where it can be trusted. We pride ourselves on delivering our clients true value through high quality, personalized service at a favorable price in just a few hours.

From the beginning, we have always welcomed input from our clients. This has helped us evolve into what we are and what they want us to be. In fact, their input has played a role in the design of specific areas of this web site. Incidentally, this web site is our only significant form of formal advertising. Though its original purpose was to better serve our existing clients, our ultimate goal is to have it enlighten and attract new ones. We have found that our clients have always been our best form of advertising. Most of them heard of us simply through word-of-mouth. Often times, we learn that referrals come from not only department leaders, but also from lower level employees who change jobs. These much-appreciated referrals have always been the main source of our growth. This too reminds us that people/institutions who deal with us prefer staying with us.

Though we have nationwide capabilities, we specialize in a regional service area that includes Pennsylvania, Maryland, D.C., New Jersey, and Delaware in their entirety. We of course will consider expanding this service area should a new or potential client make the request.

Unlike most companies who provide or subcontract to online automated flood determination systems, Blue Rock Flood Services, being one of the more experienced companies, continues to exercise necessary caution and process flood determinations manually. Why? Because after a great deal of research and testing, we have learned that these automated flood determination systems have been and continue to be incredibly inaccurate in areas where it matters most. The trouble is, many of these systems use street number locating software based largely on assumed block numbers. While this might be reasonably accurate in urban areas, they are seldom accurate in rural or even suburban areas. Since the software is focusing on street numbers, it is actually looking for the mailbox, not the structures. Therefore, its especially questionable if the property exceeds a couple of acres such as a farmstead a ¼ or ½ mile back off of the road. Often times this type of software will also have street numbers progressing in the wrong direction or in many cases place the subject property literally miles from its actual location. Since these systems will only trigger a manual determination if their locating software finds the property within a few hundred feet of a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), the locating software needs to be very accurate. Unfortunately, since borrowers knowingly or unknowingly tend to fail to question not having to buy flood insurance, most of these inaccuracies will go unnoticed until there is a substantial flood-loss and the finger pointing begins.

It is no secret that companies present statistics to gain business. Some flood companies proudly advertise 98% accuracy (which sounds impressive). However, by examining the facts, we can understand how devastating a 2% inaccuracy can be. Approximately 7% of properties are in a SFHA. By placing 100% of these properties “out” of the SFHA without checking any of them, a company can still claim to be 93% accurate. Therefore, when a flood company advertises 98 percent accuracy, they have actually missed 2/7 or 29% of the properties “in” the SFHA where the bulk of the liability exists. Multiply the number of flood certificates you order on an annual basis by the remaining 2% or even 1% and ask yourself if you’re willing to accumulate the exposure and hassles associated with these mistakes. Consider this: according to FEMA, “a home in the mapped flood hazard area is five times more likely to be damaged by flood than to have a major fire!” Since the fire insurance requirement is never taken lightly, neither should the accuracy of your flood vendor.

Lenders often overlook the fact that even though their flood vendor has an E&O policy in place, it is the lender who is ultimately responsible for making sure the job is done properly. Therefore, it would be in their best interest to use a service displaying integrity and the highest standards.

For some time now, we have had a great deal of interest in automated flood determination systems in hopes of easily increasing our capacity and profit margin. After all, these systems are promoted in such a way that one would be considered foolish not to be using one of them. While we will continue to monitor this slowly improving technology, our conclusion is that even the best of these automated systems that cover our service area pose an unacceptable amount of risk. We keep an open invitation to the companies who offer this technology to prove to us that it can be trusted. We look forward to that distant day when it has an acceptable track record.

While we too use locating software to find addresses, we never rely on it. We only use it for approximate locations. We rely on deed descriptions, tax maps, and aerial photos to precisely locate the parcel on the current Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM). In all cases where a property is found in or near a SFHA, we use the legal description (when provided) or aerial photos to plot the parcel onto the FIRM to ensure the determination is completely accurate.

Since we at Blue Rock Flood Services do check each and every property, we, unlike most of our competitors, do not automatically require flood insurance when we find a parcel that lies partially in the floodplain. We take the additional steps necessary to determine whether the insurable improvements are located in or out of the floodplain. We maintain a very good working relationship with the various zoning and code enforcement officials of the local municipalities. These ongoing relationships have been instrumental in our ability to develop and maintain an in-house file of new housing development site plans and tax maps, which enables us to perform accurate determinations on new properties that have not yet been recorded. Once a determination is made, all of the information is saved into our system and transferred onto the current FEMA Standard Flood Hazard Determination form. If the borrower should dispute our determination, we are willing to visit the property (under the terms of the agreement) for a closer look. We will also gladly deal directly with the borrower if they have any questions or if they simply need help with a designated flood zone.

Since 1993, there has never been a claim filed against our E&O policy. We attribute this to the fact that we have always manually located properties. Blue Rock Flood Services is committed to using only the most reliable methods on work performed for our clients. We only change to newer methods if and when they are proven to be reliable and accurate. After all, this protects all interested parties from any future liability, which is probably another reason why people/institutions who deal with us prefer staying with us.

The Flood Reform Bill of 1994 requires that any providers of flood hazard information fully insure and guarantee the accuracy of such information. All of our insured flood hazard determinations are guaranteed by our Errs & Omissions insurance policy. To ensure our flood information is current, we maintain an active escrow account with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) so that the latest FIRMs are automatically issued to our company as revisions are made and published.

Our Life of Loan Coverage guarantees the lending institution that we will monitor the flood status of the given property for as long as the loan is in force. When a revised federal flood map is issued showing a change in the flood status of the given property, we will automatically inform you of a new certification.

We offer the fastest turnaround time available for hand-mapped FZDs. Depending on the backlog of any given day, we can often return your FZD in 15-30 minutes. Most orders, however, are completed within an hour or two. We also give immediate attention to your occasional "RUSH" orders.

When comparing prospective vendors of any product or service, make sure “you get what you pay for”. Since we still insist on the hands-on approach, our people spend an average of twenty minutes on processing each of your orders. There are times when processing an order requires more than an hour to ensure it is correct. Contrary to popular sales pitches, accuracy and reliable verification takes time. So, if you’re lending your own capital and/or are in search of real service and expertise from a company you can count on, give us a try. Experience why institutions that deal with us prefer staying with us.

As part of our commitment to customer satisfaction, Blue Rock Flood Services is open to various pricing scenarios to suite the individual needs of our clients. Depending on the volume and the difficulty level of your company’s average monthly orders, we can offer you a discounted price similar to that of our other clients within a similar category. Rest assured that our prices are competitive. Why not use this opportunity to experience value by using a high-end service at a low-end price. If you do, please know that you will also get the satisfaction of knowing that at least 10% of your invoice will be donated to charity.

Thank you for taking the time to visit this site and review this information. We hope that you will consider trying Blue Rock Flood Services. We certainly understand how a company might be apprehensive about making a change in any of their major suppliers and/or service providers. Please be assured that new clients may opt to make the change one branch or department at a time in order to ease the transition. We would be happy to provide our service to any upstanding organization and we will do our very best to be the preferred source of reliable flood zone determinations. If you decide to keep looking around, do your company a favor, protect its portfolio, choose a vendor with tradesman that will hand-map 100% of your FZDs as we do. Thank you for considering us. Please call if you have any questions.



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