Nashville Flood 2010
Flood insurance is one area of insurance where most people don’t think about it until its close to home. One reason is most feel they can predict their flood risk, based on prior events. If you think about it this is partially true, depending how close you are to a river, ocean, or body of water.
However, take it one step further and its easy to see that weather patterns have been changing, development of land changes the nature of water runoff, and floods are measured in chances in 100 years (longer than most of us live). So more now than ever prior short term indications are poor predictors of the future. This is one reason the national government provides insurance and not the private industry.
A few keys to understanding on flood insurance works:
1) There is a 30 day waiting period to issue a flood policy, unless its lender forced. Meaning if you see the water around you rising, it’s too late to buy a policy.
2) A flood is defined 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).Bad drainage just on your property is not a flood.
3) The highest coverage available from FEMA is 250K for a home, 100K for personal property. You can buy excess from private companies in most cases.
4) Each structure even if on the same property must carry its own policy.
Determine your Flood Risk at FloodSmart.gov
Is your property in a high risk or moderate to low risk area? Knowing your flood profile will help you understand your risk of financial loss.
Find out your relative flood risk right now — online at FloodSmart.gov’s “Assess Your Risk”. Simply enter your property address to see your relative risk, find links to flood maps, and other flood insurance community resources.
Flood maps determine your level of risk. You can also view current flood maps at FEMA’s Map Store located at www.store.msc.fema.gov. FEMA is also undertaking a nationwide effort to produce new digitized flood maps for hundreds of communities over the next five years. These new maps will reflect changes in floodplains caused by new development and natural forces.
News for Low-Risk Properties
Expanded, Lower-cost Coverage
If a single family home or business is located in a low- to moderate-risk area, the owners may be eligible for the Preferred Risk Policy (PRP). For homeowners, this policy covers the home and contents and starts at $112 a year. PRP policies are available for businesses as well, saving about 30 percent off standard premiums. Contents-only PRP policies are available for renters, and business owners that lease their buildings. Ask an insurance agent for details.
What about your car? If you carry comprehensive coverage (Other Than Collision) on your auto policy, then your car is covered for flood damage.