Should You Get Flood Insurance?

| December 08, 2016
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If you want to be protected against significant financial losses in the event your property gets flooded, then purchasing flood insurance coverage is the best way to do that. When looking for flood insurance, you should determine the right amount of coverage to get based on your risk level. However, it’s not recommended that you dismiss the idea of buying flood coverage just because you live in a low risk area.

Floods are some of the most common natural disasters that Americans have to deal with and you never know where the next flood will hit. To be properly prepared for the worst, getting flood insurance coverage is highly recommended.

Sometimes You Just Have To Get Flood Insurance

When it comes to buying flood insurance, it’s safe to say that sometimes you don’t really have a choice and need to buy it. If you use a federally backed mortgage and plan on purchasing property in a high risk area, then you absolutely need to get flood insurance. If you live in a Special Flood Hazard Area, then this is even more urgent than you think. With a 1% chance of flooding, getting flood insurance coverage is the best way to protect your home against significant water damage.

There are cases when you may not have to buy flood insurance, but if you want to benefit from a certain type of disaster aid (federal disaster aid), you may need to get it. For instance, if you live in a federal disaster area, then the SBA will offer you low interest loans, yet you need to carry flood insurance coverage.

Getting Flood insurance is highly recommended

Even if you do live in an area where the risk of flooding is low, by carrying flood insurance you have the peace of mind that you’re covered should your property be flooded. As a homeowner who purchased flood insurance coverage, you’ll be protected against damage from driving rain. On the other hand, damage from water that’s already on the ground (such as seeping water, snowmelt) isn’t covered.

Based on information from The National Flood Insurance Program, the average flood claim is about forty eight thousand dollars. Also, a single inch of water in a one thousand sq. ft. home can still cause damages of approximately ten thousand dollars. Just ask yourself: Can you or are you ready to pay that out of pocket? Compared to high risk areas, the cost of flood insurance for low risk areas is much lower.

Here are a few things to bear in mind prior to buying flood insurance:

  1. Try to determine your personal risk tolerance. For instance, if you always purchase extra insurance when buying electronics, then you certainly need to get flood insurance as well.
  2. Learn more about the potential costs to rebuild or repair your property.
  3. Ask your neighbors if they’ve ever been flooded before.
  4. Check out your home inventory in order to determine the amount of water that might seep into your home. If you don’t have an inventory, make one and assess how much it would cost you to have everything replaced in your home.
  5. Check out the FEMA flood maps. You can do that by accessing floodsmart.gov.

At the end of the day, you’re the only one that can decide whether you should get flood insurance or not. However, prior to taking a decision, you should have all the facts.

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