Do you know that the most common natural disaster in the United States is flooding? Ninety percent of the damages caused by natural disaster involve flooding. It costs hefty amounts of losses to insurers, homeowners, and government. But do you need flood insurance? How do you know your house is in a flood risk area? To answer these questions you need to understand flood insurance.
Are you in Flood risk area?
According to the Federal, Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) floods everyone in the United States lives in a flood risk area. These flooding can be inland, flash flooding or flooding caused by storms. So if you are moving to a new home the question you need to ask mortgage lender or home insurer is about the risk of flood in that area. This is to identify whether you are in a low, moderate or high-risk flood area.
If you have Home Insurance, why do you need flood insurance?
Most Home Insurance doesn’t cover flooding. Water damages from water bursting inside the house are covered in home insurance. Some policies do cover water damages caused by water from the sky. So basically if you want to save yourself from the ruins of flood you need to have separate flood insurance.
What does Home insurance cover?
Home Insurances are normally customized to meet each client’s needs. Typical home insurance covers damages caused by certain perils such as theft and fire. It covers damages caused by internal water but doesn’t cover damages caused by floods and earthquake. So that means you need to have separate flood insurance since you are in a flood risk area.
What does flood insurance cover?
Flood Insurance is administered by the federal government hence the rates of the cover don’t vary. The flood insurance policy covers direct losses caused by floods. Such as erosions caused by wave current or storms. You can avail insurance cover up to $250,000 for the structure of the house and you can insure up to $100,000 for contents of the house. Personal property losses and structural damages are covered separately under flood insurance.
Structural damages include
- Building and its foundation
- Inbuilt kitchen appliances
- Permanent flooring and carpeting
- Electrical fittings and plumbing
- Central air conditioning and heating
Personal property losses include:
- Clothing and jewelry
- Curtains and other valuables.
- Portable electronics and appliances
What is not covered under flood insurance?
- Damages caused by moisture or mold
- Additional expenses such as temporary housing during repairs from the flood.
- Exterior features and landscapes such as trees, plants, swimming pools.
- Financial loss due to interruptions in business
It is mandatory to have flood insurance if you are living in a high-risk flood area. However, if your location falls in the category of moderate to low-risk flood area the conditions are different. It is better to consult with an agent in your area to discuss your flood insurance needs.