Floods are one of the most common and costly natural disasters in the United States. According to FEMA, floods cause more than $8 billion in damages annually, and affect every state and territory. Floods can happen anywhere, anytime, and with little or no warning. They can result from heavy rain, snowmelt, storm surges, blocked drainage systems, or levee failures.
If you own a home or a business, you may think that your standard property insurance policy will cover you in case of a flood. However, this is not the case. Most homeowners and business insurance policies do not cover damage at all, or only cover it up to a certain limit. This means that you could be left with a huge financial burden if your property is damaged or destroyed.
That’s why you need flood insurance.
Flood insurance is a separate policy that covers your building and its contents from damage. It is offered by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which is managed by FEMA and delivered by more than 50 private insurance companies. You can purchase insurance through your insurance agent or company, or directly from the NFIP.
Flood insurance is available to anyone living in one of the 23,000 participating NFIP communities, which are required to adopt and enforce floodplain management regulations that help reduce risk. If you live in a high-risk area and have a mortgage from a federally backed lender, you are required to have insurance. However, even if you live in a low- or moderate-risk area, you should still consider getting insurance, as more than 20% of claims come from these areas.
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Flood insurance covers both your building and its contents, up to certain limits.
The maximum coverage limit for a single-family home is $250,000 for the building and $100,000 for the contents. For a business, the maximum coverage limit is $500,000 for the building and $500,000 for the contents. You can also purchase excess flood insurance from private insurers if you need more coverage.
Flood insurance covers direct physical losses caused by flooding, such as structural damage, electrical and plumbing systems, appliances, carpeting, furniture, clothing, and personal belongings. It also covers some expenses related to preventing further damage or relocating to another place while your property is being repaired or rebuilt.
Flood insurance does not cover losses caused by earth movement, mold, mildew, sewer backup, or loss of income or business interruption. It also does not cover vehicles, outdoor property, currency, valuable papers, or certain types of property stored in basements.
The Cost of Flood Insurance.
The cost of flood insurance depends on several factors, such as your property’s location, elevation, construction type, age, occupancy, deductible, and coverage amount. You can use the NFIP’s online tool to estimate your premium based on your specific situation.
Flood insurance has a 30-day waiting period before it goes into effect unless it is purchased as required by a lender or related to a map change. This means that you cannot wait until it is imminent to buy insurance. You need to plan and buy it before you need it.
Flood insurance can help you protect your most important assets and recover faster after a flood. If you want to discuss options for flood insurance, please call us at 561-732-9305. Our quoting hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM. In addition, you can request a quote online. Please remember, We Handle All the Work, While You Save!
Robert Macoviak is the President of Oyer, Macoviak and Associates. Oyer, Macoviak and Associates is the oldest independent insurance agency in Boynton Beach and has been in business since 1953. Oyer, Macoviak and Associates are vested members of the community who are committed to doing business face-to-face and being your insurance advocate in times of need.