There is a lot of confusion regarding what is covered with a homeowner’s policy in relation to flood insurance. So we spoke with insurance expert Chris Huebener to help you understand what flood insurance is and if you need a flood policy.
What is considered a flood?
First, let’s define flooding. In the insurance world, a flood is defined as natural, rising water. So, if water is coming up your driveway into your home, that’s a flood. But if you have a pipe burst inside your house, that’s not a flood.
Does a homeowners insurance policy cover a flood?
No, your homeowners policy will not cover a flood. Only flood insurance will. Even if a hurricane comes through and blows your roof off, your homeowners policy will cover your roof, but not flood damage from water getting into your house through your missing roof or a storm surge.
Who needs flood insurance?
FEMA maps out certain flood zones and defines areas as high or low risk for flooding. However, even in the low risk areas, one out of four homes will experience a flood at some point.
Flooding happens everywhere and it is often due to storms. So when assessing your flood risk, it’s important to look at all areas of risk, not just whether you’re in a technical flood zone.
Is flood insurance worth the cost?
It’s important to talk to an agent about your specific property to get an idea of the rates for a flood insurance policy. However, the average cost of flood damage is around $50,000. So, if your flood insurance policy premium is $500, that’s absolutely worth it to cover $50,000 of damage.
The important thing is to understand your risk and understand the potential costs of a flood. Then you can determine whether you’d be okay paying for that damage.