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There’s something you should know: Flood losses are not covered by your homeowners insurance policy.
Floodwaters have the power to damage not only your home and sense of security, but also your financial future. How can you protect your most important investment in case of flooding?
Option 1: Hope that you’ll receive Federal disaster relief if a flood hits.
- Many people wrongly believe that the U.S. government will take care of all their financial needs if they suffer damage due to flooding. The truth is that Federal disaster assistance is only available if the President formally declares a disaster. Even if you do get disaster assistance, it’s often a loan you have to repay, with interest, in addition to your mortgage loan that you still owe on the damaged property.
- Most importantly, you must consider the fact that if your home is flooded and disaster assistance isn’t offered, you’ll have to shoulder the massive damage costs alone. The bottom line is that if you’re looking for secure protection from financial loss due to flood damage, Federal disaster assistance is not the answer.
Option 2: Buy flood insurance and stay protected no matter what.
- When disaster strikes, flood insurance policyholder claims are paid even if a disaster is not Federally declared. Flood insurance means you’ll be reimbursed for all your covered losses. And unlike Federal aid, it never has to be repaid.
- In general, a policy does not take effect until 30 days after you purchase flood insurance. So, if the weather forecast announces a flood alert for your area and you go to purchase coverage, it’s already too late. You will not be insured if you buy a policy a few days before a flood.
Flood Insurance FAQs
What does flood insurance cover?
Flood insurance is a type of insurance that covers property and belongings damaged by flooding. It is distinct from standard homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, which typically does not cover flood damage.
Is it required to have flood insurance?
If you reside in a high-risk area for flooding, it is strongly advised that you purchase flood insurance. Floods can occur anywhere, so it is prudent to consider flood insurance even if you live in a low-risk area.
How can I determine if I live in a flood-prone area?
You can contact the floodplain management office in your community or the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to determine if your property is in a high-risk flood zone.
What is covered by flood insurance?
Typically, flood insurance covers damage to your home’s structure and foundation, as well as your personal belongings such as furniture and appliances. It may also cover additional living expenses incurred as a result of a temporary relocation.
What is not covered by flood insurance?
Unless you’ve purchased additional coverage, flood insurance typically does not cover damage caused by a sewer or drain backup. In addition, damage caused by a storm surge is not covered, unless you have a separate policy for this type of flooding.
What is the cost of flood insurance?
The cost of flood insurance can vary based on your property’s location, the level of coverage you select, and your flood risk. A standard flood insurance policy for a residential property can cost between $800 and $1000 per year on average.
How can I obtain flood insurance?
The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, offers flood insurance (FEMA). Private insurance companies may offer additional coverage options.
When does flood insurance become active?
Most flood insurance policies have a 30-day waiting period before they become effective, so it is essential to purchase coverage well in advance of a flood.
Can I obtain flood insurance following a flood?
No, flood insurance cannot be purchased after a flood has occurred. You must have flood insurance before the flood occurs.
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