What Floridians Need to Know About Flood Insurance


Why is Flood Insurance important?

Floods can occur anytime, and anywhere. In fact, every state has experienced flooding over the past 50 years. According to FEMA, floods are the No. 1 natural disaster in the United States. It’s important to remember that roughly 90% of all natural disasters also involve some form of flooding. Don’t let the nickname “Sunshine State” fool you, Florida’s large coastline and low elevation makes it especially prone to experiencing flooding. FEMA estimates nearly 2.5 million homes in Florida are located in special flood hazard zones, which is more than three times any other state in the U.S. Flooding can be caused by heavy rainfall, storm surge from a hurricane or tropical storms, or river overflow. You do not need to live in a high-risk flood zone for flood waters to cause costly damage to your home. All it takes is a few inches of water to cause major damage to your home and its contents. In order to ensure you are making the best decisions for your family and home, you should know your home’s risk of flooding and your flood insurance options.

Here’s what you need to know to keep you and your home protected in case of flooding:

1. Flooding is not covered under your homeowner\’s insurance policy.
A standard home, condo, or renter’s insurance policy typically does not include flood coverage. Homeowners insurance policies may protect you against water damage, such as a pipe leak or hole in your roof.  However, flood-inducing factors such as torrential rainfall or storm surge are not typically covered. Only a specific flood insurance policy will cover your home’s flood-related losses.
2. Identify your flood zone.  
Flood zones are geographic areas that FEMA has defined according to varying levels of flood risk.  Everyone lives in an area with some flood risk—it’s just a question of whether you live in a low, moderate, or high-risk area. These zones are used for floodplain management and insurance purposes. Online flood zone maps are a great tool to calculate the risk of flooding to your home or business. Find out your flood zone designation here.
3. You might have to get flood insurance.
There is no place considered “safe” from flooding, but some areas are more likely to encounter losses due to flooding. Depending on your geographical location, buying flood insurance might be mandatory. Those who live in high-risk flood zones are usually required by mortgage lenders to purchase flood insurance.
4. If you’re not in a special flood zone, you’ll pay less for insurance.
Whether it is a requirement or not, you\’re in some danger of loss from a flood. Anyone that lives in Florida can tell you that on any given day it can rain hard for extended periods of time. With lots of rain comes risk for damages no matter your flood zone.   Every year 20-25 percent of all flood claims are filed in low to moderate flood risk areas. Protect your home before the storm hits. In 2017, Hurricane Irma affected homes in areas only expected to flood once in every 100 years causing massive damage and costs difficult for homeowners to absorb. Don’t let your flood zone level prevent you from protecting your home. Low-cost policies are typically offered for homes that have a low to moderate flood risk. Get yours today!
5. What does flood insurance cover?
You can purchase coverage to help protect your home (building coverage), your personal belongings (contents coverage) or both, but there are always separate deductibles. Building property coverage: It may include coverages such as the physical structure of your home and its foundation; plumbing and electrical systems; central air and heating systems; Refrigerators, cooking stoves and built-in appliances, cabinets, and paneling; window blinds; and a detached garage (other detached structures need their own policy). Personal contents coverage: Clothing, furniture and electronics; curtains; some portable appliances; freezers and the foods within them; and certain valuables like art (up to a specified limit). What isn’t covered? Typical flood policies may exclude: damage caused earth movement, moisture or mold/mildew damage that \”could have been avoided by the homeowner\”; currency, precious metals, and paper valuables like stock certificates; outdoor property such as decks, fences, patios, landscaping, wells and septic systems, and hot tubs and pools. Living expenses, like temporary housing (if flood damage deems your home uninhabitable); financial losses caused by business interruption; Cars and other self-propelled vehicles.

Protection for Life.

Having a flood insurance policy helps protect you from the cost of flood damages and loss. Do not wait to learn if flood insurance is right for you after an incident occurs… contact your advisor today! At Boyd Insurance & Investments our mission is to provide our clients Protection for Life, with support through life’s unforeseen circumstances involving your home, business, and other assets. Our agents are knowledgeable and will help navigate your policies with you. Call (941) 745-8300 or click here to receive an online quote!

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