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Renters claim they were never told complex was in flood zone

Posted June 17, 2009

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— The City of Raleigh is taking action on behalf of apartment dwellers flooded out of their homes by Tuesday’s downpour.

It is not the first time residents at Brookhill Townhouse Apartments have had flooding-related losses.

The city plans to draft a letter of interest to the state Division of Emergency Management for a grant to address the claims, Stormwater Utility Manager Danny Bowden said Wednesday.

The apartments, located at 5425 Dana Drive, were among the areas that flooded on Tuesday after heavy rains caused two nearby creeks to overflow.

If the grant is approved, the money could be used as a potential buyout for the structure or used to pay for the structures to be elevated above the flood plain, Bowden said. Officials are hoping to send the letter by next week.

brookhill apartments Raleigh apartment residents clean up after flood

Brookhill Apartments were built in 1967 – 10 years before the city flood maps were produced. The property owner did not take a buyout, later offered by the Federal Emergency Management.

Officials said the apartments also flooded in 2006.

Current renters say they were never told their homes were in a flood zone.

Renter Jason Kim is unsure if his renters' insurance will cover the damage to his apartment. Water rushed through his living room, ruining his carpet and his belongings.

Kim said if he had been told he would be living on a flood plain, it would have impacted his decision to rent the apartment.

Neighbor Brandon Greene said the apartment complex requires tenants to get renters insurance, but did not mention flood insurance. “That would’ve been something we should’ve known at the front, but we were not told,” he said.

Brookhill’s regional manager Dennis Smith has not returned phone calls for comment.

City officials told WRAL News that they were unaware of any city or state law requiring landlords to tell renters if the property is located in a flood zone.


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  • DeM Jun 18, 2009

    In this case, if flooding were persistent and not obvious from flood maps, then a warning was in order.

    But does the landlord have to tell a tenant about everything? Schools? Sex offenders? How good the coffee is at the corner store? In the age of the internet, there's plenty of info online. If you're a prospective tenant, take responsibility for YOUR DECISION on where to live, and do a little research yourself. Don't expect the world to do your leg work, and don't blame others if you don't investigate your decisions before you make them.

  • bvw30 Jun 18, 2009

    I lived in Brookhill in the mid 90's trust me it doesnt take 4inches of rain for there to be a flood...anytime it rains for more than a couple hours..water is up to the door...Brookhill should be held responsible for this its been happening for decades.

  • beachboater Jun 18, 2009

    Don't worry, the gooberment will bail them out, or at worst stimulate them.

  • Fishman Jun 18, 2009

    Per the legally accepted FEMA maps, the property is not located in a FEMA designated Special Flood Hazard Area. Four inches of rain in an hour will cause any area to flood.

  • thought Jun 17, 2009

    even if there isn't a law it is the right thing to do - always put yourself in someone elses shoes. Would they be happy if they had a place that flooded and they knew?????? just saying......

  • Adelinthe Jun 17, 2009

    Feeling for them, but one has to realize if a creek or river runs by their property, that there is a risk.

    Praying they all do ok.

    God bless.