In August, when Hurricane Harvey was bearing down on Texas, David Clutter was in court, trying one more time to make his insurer pay his flood claim — from Hurricane Sandy, five years before. Mr. Clutter’s insurer is the federal government. As it resists his claims, he has been forced to take out a third mortgage on his house in Long Beach, N.Y., to pay for repairs to make it habitable for his wife and three children.
He owes more than the house is worth, and his flood-insurance premiums just went up. The government-run National Flood Insurance Program is, for now, virtually the only source of flood insurance for more than five million households in the United States.
This hurricane season, as tens of thousands of Americans seek compensation for storm-inflicted water damage, they face a problem: The flood insurance program is broke and broken. The program, administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, has been in the red since Hurricane Katrina flooded New […]