The south of the US is more prone to flooding than any other part of this great country. According to the National Flood Services, Texas and Florida are among the top 10 states where flooding is highly likely. And in the US, up to 90% of natural disasters are associated with floods.
This is where flood insurance can be your savior.
If you live in Zone AE or the above-mentioned states, this post about flood insurance covers everything you need to know. First, let’s cover the basics.
What is flood insurance?
Flood insurance is one type of property insurance that is designed to help reduce the socioeconomic impact caused by a flood. The insurance covers direct physical losses for both domestic and commercial properties.
In addition to direct flooding, flood insurance covers damages by waves, currents, an abnormal surge in tides, and flash floods. Flood insurance in the US comes directly from the federal government’s administration. Another important piece of information about flood insurance is that it is considered a Vis major event in several states. So unless you get supplemental insurance, the damages from floods may not be covered.
Flood insurance packages for building structures and the property inside are usually separate, so you need to purchase them individually. Most companies offer replacement insurance for buildings while the coverage for personal assets is on cash value.
The National Flood Insurance Program states that flood insurance policies should cover the following:
Under building coverage
- Electrical and plumbing
- Built-in appliances, including dishwashers, refrigerators, and cooking stoves
- All types of permanent installations – bookcases, paneling, cabinets, and carpets
- Foundation wall, staircases, anchorage systems, and window blinds
- Detached garages
- Water and fuel tanks and pumps
- Solar energy panels and equipment
Under contents coverage
- Personal belongings, including clothes, electronics, and furniture
- Artwork and valuables up to $2,500
- Microwave oven
- Washer and dryer
- Air conditioners
- Furnishings, including carpets and curtains
How much does flood Insurance cost?
The average homeowner in the US pays about $700 for flood insurance premiums per year, which is data according to Bankrate. But generally, for home structure coverage, the maximum amount of flood insurance is $25,000, and for home contents, it is not more than $100,000.
Flood insurance that costs more than the figure mentioned above comes under “excess coverage” and is usually offered exclusively by private insurers. In this regard, researching articles and resources that provide in-depth information can be very helpful. For additional information, you might want to check out Homeowners Insurance and Calidad Insurance: Your One-Stop Solution for Insuring Every Part of Your Life.
Commercial flood insurance is much higher than residential ones as the NFIP provides up to $500,000 for building structures and the same amount for the contents. In case your commercial/business property is valued more than the above figure, you can buy additional coverage called “excess coverage.”
In addition, your insurance premium will depend on several factors, including:
- Your home’s location
- Age of your home
- Type of insurance package
- The maximum limit of your insurance
- The deductibles
- From which company you got the flood insurance
How much is flood insurance in Zone AE
The average flood insurance premium in Zone AE is $1,025 per year, according to the NFIP. However, it is not uncommon for flood insurance in this high-risk area to be as high as $5,000.
How much is flood insurance in Florida?
The average yearly premium for flood insurance in Florida is $562. However, the Sunshine State falls under a high-risk flood zone, so the insurance rates vary greatly from one city to the other.
For instance, the average flood insurance in Port St. Lucie is $389 per year, while in St. Petersburg, it is $950. In addition, the NFIP adds an additional $25 annual surcharge for flood insurance packages for homeowners in Florida. But if your home in Florida is not your primary residence, the surcharge can be as high as $250.
If you are in Florida, secure flood insurance from private insurers, as they can offer more competitive rates than the NFIP.
How much is flood insurance in Texas
In Texas, a flood insurance package costs $634 per year for policies secured through the NFIP. Like other states, Texas’s flood insurance rates vary from one city to the other.
For instance, the average flood insurance per policy is $479 in Plano, but it can be as high as $1,165 in Laredo. The actual cost of the flood insurance premiums in Texas will depend on several factors, including:
- When and how is your home built
- The location
- Elevation of your home
- How often do you stay at your residence
If you are a Texas homeowner, you must take a $25 annual surcharge from the NFIP into account. However, if your Texan residence is let out for rent or you stay at this home less than 50% of the year, expect to pay a $250 surcharge.
Consider getting your flood insurance in Texas through a private insurer, as the rates are relatively lower than through the NFIB. Private flood insurers in Texas also offer more options to customize the policies precisely to your requirements.
Homeowners in Texas are not legally required to have flood insurance. However, if the location of your home falls under the high-risk or Zone AE on the flood maps, having flood insurance will save you a lot of money, just in case, a flash flood hits your home.
Flood insurance costs and how much you pay for the premiums depend on several factors – your location is the primary one. Some states may not legally require you to purchase flood insurance unless your location is categorized as high-risk.
However, with the increasing unpredictability of floods and their severity, paying for a monthly premium in the hundreds will potentially save thousands of dollars if and when disasters decide to strike your home. So it is much better to equip your homes with flood insurance than to have them get washed away in a flash flood.
Be sure to shop/compare for the best flood insurance rates and read up on helpful resources, such as Top 10 Most Used Home Insurance Claim Adjuster Secret Tactics , to get the best rates.