You may ask yourself, “self, do I need flood insurance?” and the not obvious answer is probably “yes.” Something many people don’t know is that flooding occurs in EVERY STATE. Correct, flooding is the only natural disaster that affects every state.
You may also think to yourself, “I have homeowners insurance, that covers it, right?” or ” I rent.. so I don’t need flood insurance.” If only it were that simple. We’ll talk about what flooding is, its causes, who needs it, and why.
What Causes Floods?
Flooding occurs when land that is usually dry overflows or is submerged in water. It is also the most common natural disaster and is generally caused by heavy rainfall, rapid snowmelt, or storm surge from a hurricane.
Another cause of flooding is new construction and paving. It can change the lands’ ability to drain properly and cause flooding in areas that were not originally at risk. So areas initially zoned as low-risk can quickly become high-risk as new construction and development change the landscape. That’s why it’s a good idea to have a flood insurance policy.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Flood Damage?
No. No, it does not. This is a common misconception that unfortunately leaves a lot of homeowners “stranded” when a flood does occur. The same goes for business owners or renters; those insurance policies usually do not cover floods.
If you think or are 100% certain your insurance covers flood, we recommend giving your agent a call just to confirm. What would it hurt?
Who Needs A Flood Insurance Policy?
As mentioned above, flooding is a common natural disaster, and unexpected circumstances can cause it. So even if you don’t live on the coast, it’s a good idea to carry flood insurance or at least speak to an agent to see if it may be a good choice for you.
Home and business owners are equally at risk. You can check whether you are in a high or low-risk area using this flood map provided by FEMA. Being in a high-risk area could mean a higher rate; however, the average flood insurance claim in 2021 was $44,401. Not many home or business owners have that kind of a safety net.
Some people may choose to rely on Federal disaster assistance, which comes in two forms. One is a loan, which must be paid back with interest, and the other is a FEMA disaster grant, which is about $5,000 on average per household. Still not going to cover that average of $44k in damage. A flood insurance policy really does provide you with peace of mind, especially when you consider that just 1 inch of floodwater can cause $25,000 in damages.
According to FEMA, $985 was the average annual NFIP policy premium in 2021. Now, this is an average number, and your risk factor plays a role in your premium. But when the numbers to restore your home and chances of a disaster are so high – how much would you pay for the comfort of knowing your home or business is covered when the unexpected happens?
What is an NFIP Policy?
NFIP is the National Flood Insurance Program. It is managed by FEMA and is delivered to the public by a network of more than 50 insurance companies – including us!
Flood insurance can be mandatory. The federal government requires mortgaged properties in Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA) to be insured against flooding. The government sets the rates for these types of properties, so they are the same regardless of the carrier you choose. At the end of the day, it’s best to choose a carrier you trust.
Do I Need Flood Insurance? Talk To An Agent
It’s important to understand what a flood is and the risks it poses to your home or business. We hope this blog has given you some of that information. FEMA is another great resource with countless tools that can help guide you in the right direction. But if this is all a little overwhelming, or you’d rather not do the research yourself, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us to request a quote or speak to an agent. We’re happy to guide you through the process.