NORWALK - People who live in high-risk flood regions are being hit with up to 18 percent increases on their flood insurance premiums under new legislation that went into effect this month.

The increases include policies for homes damaged by Superstorm Sandy.

John Betar, who moved to Fairfield Beach in 1968, says he has seen his flood insurance rates skyrocket from $800 to $2,000.

FEMA says the jump in the cost of flood insurance is designed to make the program more sustainable. The Flood Insurance Program is at least $24 billion in debt, according to FEMA.

The new rates are still lower than the 25 percent hike originally proposed in 2012.

Insurance agents say the only thing homeowners can do to really lower their bill is raise their house.