Coverage to Help Weather the Storm
If you’ve ever experienced flooding in your home, you know not all water damage is created equal.
While a standard homeowners insurance policy will protect your home if it floods, many people unfortunately find out too late that their policy only protects them if the house suffers water damage due to a pipe burst or wind-driven rain. Given that flooding is the most frequent and expensive type of natural disaster in the United States, you should consider purchasing flood insurance regardless of whether your rent or own your home.
Flood Insurance has coverage that can protect a home's:
- Physical Structure - The structure of your home will include things like electrical and plumbing, foundation, central air systems, furnace, gas and electrical appliances, and permanent carpeting or finished floors.
- Personal Contents - The contents of your home include furniture, electronics, clothing, air conditioning units, washer and dryer, and area carpeting.
Flood Insurance Frequently Asked Questions
Do I have to live in a certain area to need flood insurance?
The government set up the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) in 1968 to limit the cost of flooding for taxpayers. This program maps out hazardous flood zones, called flood plains, and the boundaries of these areas are routinely adjusted as program administrators re-assess which areas are likely to flood.
Often, a mortgage company will require an individual to purchase a flood insurance policy if they live in a flood plain. But even if you don’t live in a flood plain, there is still a chance that your home will be affected by flooding. Don't make the costly mistake of forgoing insurance because you thought you had to live in one of these zones to need it.
How much does flood insurance cost?
Flood insurance premium rates don’t vary as much as other insurance products. This is because flood insurance is provided only by the federal government through select licensed insurers. This helps control the rates among insurance providers.
Your home's location will have a great impact on the cost of flood coverage. Homes are assessed based on flood risk zones, where the lower the risk of flooding in the area, the lower the premiums. The presence of a basement in your home will further raise monthly premiums. Residents in higher-risk flood zones can expect to pay more for coverage.
Do I need flood insurance coverage?
The decision to acquire flood insurance should be guided by the flood risk of your location. If you live in a higher-risk flood zone, you will likely be required to purchase flood insurance. This includes coastal areas or anywhere commonly floods. But other areas are also at risk. According to FEMA, roughly 20% of flood insurance claims come from low-to-moderate flood zones. So flood insurance can be a worthwhile investment even in lower-risk areas.
Once I purchase a policy, how quickly will it go into effect?
Most flood insurance policies require a 30-day waiting period between the time that the policy is purchased and the time it goes into effect. If you wait until there is an impending storm to buy your policy, you may not be covered in time.
This material is for general informational purposes only. Products, services, and discounts referenced herein are not available in all states or in all underwriting companies. All statements are subject to the terms, exclusions and conditions of the applicable policy. In all instances, current policy contract language prevails. Coverage is subject to individual policyholders meeting our underwriting qualifications and state availability. Other terms, conditions and exclusions may apply.