Protecting Your Property with Flood Insurance
Though other hazards grab the headlines, flooding is the most common natural disaster in the US. The risk of flooding in parts of Puget Sound area is a constant threat. With recent incidents in mind, it’s important to make sure you’re properly protected.
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Here are some important things you need to know:
- Flood insurance is not generally included in a homeowners or renters policy.
- New flood maps for the region have recently been introduced, changing and adding to areas most at risk.
- Even if you’re outside a high-risk flood area, that doesn’t mean you don’t need flood insurance. More than one quarter of flood claims nationally come from outside these high-risk areas.
- Banks and other lenders require mortgage-holders living in high-risk locations to be insured against flooding. It’s the law.
- Flood insurance does not become active until 30 days after a policy is issued, so it’s dangerous to wait until there’s a flood warning before acting.
- If your property is flooded twice or more and you don’t have insurance, you’ll be denied federal disaster aid.
- If you have comprehensive auto insurance, your vehicle is covered against flood damage through that policy.
What Exactly Is Flood Insurance?
Financial protection against the high costs of flood damage is provided through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). It’s overseen by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Protection is available through the national program as well as a pool of insurers and some individual private insurers, but rates are subject to FEMA guidelines. They’re based on FEMA assessments of the actual flood risk in your area.
Flood insurance covers:
- Direct physical losses to property structure and contents.
- Loss resulting from flood-related erosion caused by heavy or prolonged rain.
- Snow melt, blocked storm drains and dam failure
(Note that coverage for contents of basements is limited — so ensure you don’t store valuable items there!)
Flood Insurance for Puyallup & Surrounding areas
NFIP is only available where local governments have adopted flood plain management rules.
High-risk areas are called Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs). But where NFIP coverage is available, it can be bought for areas both inside and outside SFHAs.
Flood Insurance for Businesses
Your standard commercial insurance policy or business owner’s policy (BOP) almost certainly does not include flood coverage. Coverage is more or less the same as for residential insurance and, again, is a legal requirement if you have a mortgage and operate in a high-risk area.
How Do I Get Protected?
People tend to underestimate the risk of flooding in their area, especially if there have been no recent incidents.
Coverage can only be purchased through an insurance professions such as PNW Insurance Group.
Even if you’re outside an SFHA you may still want the security that flood insurance protection provides. It’s available at a lower premium than for high-risk areas. Monthly instalments are available and policies can have high deductibles (up to $10,000) to help reduce premiums.
Simply call us and arrange to discuss your risk factor and the cost of coverage. We’ll get you protected fast! 253-447-8006 or Contact Us!