One of the most difficult types of property insurance for owners to consider is flood insurance. Do you need it? Won’t your traditional home insurance or business property insurance cover your risks? Floods can be one of the most devastating forms of natural events on buildings. Water doesn’t just cause damage to the building’s contents, but it can lead to structural damage of the entire building, mold growth, and a significant loss of foundation support. That’s why many home insurance and property insurance policies exclude flood damage.
Are You at Risk?
Could a flood occur in your area? In most situations, it is possible. The first step is to take a look at your existing property insurance. Determine if your property insurance covers flooding of your home from rain and storms. Look at the exclusions on your policy to make sure flooding isn’t listed there. If you do not have flood insurance, buy it.
In areas where there is a high risk of flooding, property insurance rarely covers it outright. Even in many areas of low risk, there are exclusions in traditional, basic property coverage for this type of damage. To know if you live in a high risk area, turn to Floodsmart.gov. This is a federal website that breaks down the risks based on local features and climates. It tells you if you live in a flood zone. If you do, there are two things to remember:
- Your current policy probably does not provide you with coverage for flood damage.
- You are likely at the highest risk of needing this type of protection.
Once you understand your risk, you can begin to take steps to minimize it. Flood insurance is generally available for most people, though it may cost more in high risk areas. You can also take steps to minimize the risk of damage from flooding to your home. Work closely with your insurance agent to achieve the best level of protection possible.
Anyone that does not have flood protection should invest in a flood insurance plan if they own real estate. It can help to cover the thousands of dollars lost in a single flooding or storming event. Talk to your agent about the options available to help you to safeguard your home.