Flood insurance, even in a non-flood zone? You bet

Flood insurance, even in a non-flood zone? You bet

In the wake of one of the most devastating hurricanes the US has known, record flooding has occurred. In fact, in the southeastern areas of the Lone Star State, the majority of homeowners don’t even have flood insurance. And who can blame them? There was never a precedent in the area. While hail and gusty winds are a constant concern for property owners and businesses, no one would have guessed that the stormwater would contribute to the massive damage that has been experienced and spread across the country in recent days. Certainly not home mortgage companies because they don’t even require it from borrowers!

But now, as the death toll and those forced to flee their homes in search of shelter mount, one thing remains clear. When things eventually settle down, homeowners and people in the commercial sector will have to deal with the epic losses and damages themselves due to a lack of related coverage.

For homeowners without flood coverage, the facts are as inconvenient as they are painful: A standard home insurance policy does not protect against flooding and related damage. The insurance industry emphasizes unequivocally that compensation is provided only to those who had the foresight to acquire flood insurance in the event of water damage resulting from weather conditions such as a hurricane, tropical storm, or other adverse weather.

A little history about flood insurance:

The year was 1968 when the US Congress drew up its flood control program. Designed to help homeowners and business owners recover from the financial ravages of a devastating flood, its policies are available in all participating communities.

Flood coverage protects property owners or tenants from damage to the building and damage to the contents.

This includes the following:

• The construction, as well as the foundation of the building
• Electrical and plumbing systems
• Central air conditioning, fireplace, boiler
• Refrigerator, stoves and any built-in appliances, such as a dishwasher
• Carpet that is placed over a bare floor
• Personal clothing and electronics
• Drapery
• Portable heaters and air conditioners
• Carpets other than those included in the property’s coverage
• Washers and dryers

Flood compensation claims typically include:
• Replacement value: up to eighty percent of the amount needed to replace property damage in a single-family primary residence
• Actual cost value – replacement cost at the time of loss less physical depreciation

Note: The Flood Program always uses the actual cost value to determine personal property recovery.

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