Why You Need Flood Insurance and What It Covers

March 16, 2020

Standard rental property insurance in Florida does not cover your rental property’s contents should it get flooded due to heavy rainfall or a storm surge. If the risk of flooding in your area is high – as mapped by the flood insurance rate map, flood insurance is necessary to protect against financial loss from flood-related damage. A flood insurance policy is also recommended if your rental home is in an area vulnerable to a storm surge from a hurricane. It is also a must if a storm surge threatens to flood your home.

As an example, flooding and drainage issues are common in Pinellas County after receiving many inches of rain in a short period of time or several days of unabated rain. Insurers use flood zones in Pinellas County to assess a property’s flood risk. Have a look at the Pinellas County Flood Map Service Center to know your risk.

Everyone Lives in a Flood Zone, Says the FEMA

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) advises that most homeowners need flood insurance even if they’re not in an area susceptible to floods. Here are three reasons why:

1. Flood zones cannot predict future climate: There is every chance that a flood can occur outside of special flood hazard areas, which have a 1% chance of flooding each year. Rising temperatures and changing weather patterns around the globe make it tricky to pin down floods.

Also note that flood maps are subject to change. A new flood map can designate your area as risky even though it has never experienced flooding before. And it’s not just the weather, but also development in and around your area that can have an impact. It has been seen that development can increase runoff and cause water to move in one direction after the rains.

2. Flood insurance is cheaper in low- or medium-risk areas: It may not cost you much to purchase a flood insurance policy if you live in an area where the projected flood hazard is low. You may also be able to add flood coverage to your homeowner’s insurance policy or rental property insurance policy at a reasonable cost.

3. Flood damage can be financially debilitating: According to FEMA, even one inch of flooding can cost a homeowner $27,000 or more. In the tragic event that your home is flooded by several feet of water, the ensuing financial damage can be significant.

What Does Flood Insurance Cover?

A flood insurance policy covers losses resulting from flooding or flood-related erosion, storm surges, blocks in storm drainage, snowmelt and such events. You will be reimbursed for structural damage, including damage to electrical and plumbing systems, your property and its foundation, carpeting and flooring, and home appliances.

Flood insurance coverage also includes the loss of personal belongings, such as clothes washers and dryers, air-conditioners, electronics, furniture, clothing, and valuables such as jewelry and artwork up to $2,500.

Get Florida Flood Insurance Rates Customized to Your Needs

The first step to buying flood insurance in Florida is understanding your home’s risk of being flooded. Figure out the premium and deductible you can afford (the premium is paid annually). We provide you custom quotes that reflect your home’s risk and your individual circumstances. Get all your options in one place and make an informed financial decision.