Flooding & Flood Insurance
Soon it will be that time of year when flooding will be all over the news. Did you know that a standard homeowner’s insurance policy does not cover damage from flooding? Water coming into your home or business from the outside, through a basement window or other opening due to excessive rain or rising bodies of lake, rivers, streams, etcetera, typically falls under the category of a flood, and most homeowner’s insurance policies do not cover floods. According to a 2016 poll conducted by the insurance information institute, only 12 percent of homeowner’s have flood insurance.
How can you protect yourself? The first step is to make sure that your yard is properly graded so that excessive rain, and any standing water resulting from excessive rain, flows away from, and not towards your house. For more information on this, see our January 18, 2018 blog posted titled “Landscape Grading & Keeping your Basement Dry”
The second step is to determine if your home is in a flood plain. If it is, you are at risk of flooding from rising bodies of nearby lakes, rivers, streams, etcetera. FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) can provide you with information you need regarding flooding. They provide copies of the latest and most up-to-date flood zone maps for most communities. You can start by going to: https://msc.fema.gov/portal Here you will be able to type in the address of your property, hit “search” and then click on “view web map”. If you have any questions, or suspect that your property may be in a flood plain, talk to your insurance agent. You may be able to buy a separate flood policy through the federal government’s National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Talk to your insurance agent about this very important coverage and what your risks are. Not all areas of a flood plain have the same risk.
Having flood insurance, if it makes sense for your property, will allow you to get our experts in quickly to dry out your floors, walls, furniture and other belongings. When it comes to water damage, a fast response is important to keep costs down and prevent the growth of mold or other secondary damage.