Facts About Flood Insurance and What You Need to Know in 2010

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Damage from a flood is NOT covered on your home insurance policy!

Facts about floods:

– Floods and flash floods are the most common natural disaster, occurring in all fifty states
– One third of all flood insurance claims are generated outside areas considered flood-prone.
– Just a couple inches of water can do thousands of dollars of damage to a home
– One in five adults were not sure whether flood damage was covered in their standard homeowners policy
– You do not have to live near water to suffer a flood loss
– Floods can be caused by many things such as heavy rain, melting snow, inadequate or overloaded drainage systems, dam or levee failure, hurricanes and more.
– Every year, flooding causes more then $2 billion of property damage in the U.S.
– Everyone lives in a flood zone
– Your home has a 26% chance of flooding as opposed to the 9% chance of fire during the course of a typical 30 year mortgage
– A flood is defined by FEMA as – A general and temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of two or more acres of normally dry land area or of two or more properties (at least one of which is your property) from:
* Overflow of inland or tidal waters,
* Unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source, or
* A mudflow; defined as A river of liquid and flowing mud on the surfaces of normally dry land areas, as when earth is carried by a current of water or
* The collapse or subsidence of land along the shore or a lake or similar body of water as a result of erosion or undermining caused by waves or currents of water exceeding anticipated cyclical levels that result in a flood as defined above.

What is flood insurance?

Flood insurance is a special policy backed by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Flood insurance covers the rising of flood waters from the ground. It does not cover broken pipes, or main breaks that may damage your home unless they are caused by flooding. It is important to note that homeowners insurance is designed to bring your home and its contents back to the same condition it was in before a loss, while flood insurance is only meant to get you back on your feet.

Who needs flood insurance?

According to FEMA – everyone. You might think that if you don’t live in a beach-front property that you don’t need flood insurance. However, beach-front properties only account for 3% of all flood losses. Everyone lives in a flood zone and flood damage can happen to your home even if you do not live near water. More than 25% of all flood claims come from low to moderate risk areas.

How do I purchase flood insurance?

First, check if your community participates in the program. Then contact your local insurance agent. Your agent will be able to sell you a policy through the NFIP. Don’t wait to buy insurance until a flood is predicted- there is a 30 day waiting period for the insurance to go into effect.

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