Floods are one of the most common natural disasters. Your house "is more likely to be damaged by a flood than by fire," according to USAA. Flooding occurs in all 50 states, and only an inch of water can cause significant damage to your home. However, flooding is not covered by most homeowners insurance. To get flood insurance, you'll have to buy it from the National Flood Insurance Program, according to Floodsmart.
There are two types of flood insurance: a standard policy and a preferred-risk policy. The standard policy is for people in high-risk areas. It covers your home for up to $250,000 in flood damages. Additionally, any possessions that were damaged are covered up to $100,000. The preferred-risk policy is for people who live in moderate- or low-risk areas. You can get between $20,000 and $250,000 in coverage for you home, and $8,000 to $100,000 for your possessions, according to USAA.
Types of Damage
Flood insurance covers damage to your home caused by "rain, melting snow from winter thaws, storm surges, mudflows and more," according to USAA. Damages from hurricanes and tidal waters are also covered. If the flood is only on your property, your flood insurance won't cover the damage unless the water covers a minimum of two acres. If the floodwater covers your neighbor's property as well as yours, your flood insurance will pay the damage, according to Floodsmart.
When your basement is flooded, some things are covered under building coverage and other things are covered under contents coverage. Building coverage covers anything that's necessary to support the structure of your home. These would be things like circuit breaks, your water heater and furnace. Contents coverage covers other things you might have in your basement like a washer and dryer. You must buy both types of insurance to ensure that everything is covered, according to Floodsmart.
Flood insurance does not cover flooding caused by previously existing property damage. If rain leaks into your house through a damaged window or door, this is not covered. Likewise, when rain comes through a hole in your roof or wall, the damage is considered to be caused by a windstorm and not a flood. However, this type of coverage is available through most homeowners insurance policies, according to Floodsmart.
National Flood Insurance Program
You can't buy flood insurance unless the community you live in "participates in the National Flood Insurance Program," according to State Farm. The program is run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Your flood insurance policy won't go into effect until 30 days after you buy it. So if you think your home could be damaged by flood, you should buy a policy immediately.
What Types of Losses Does Flood Insurance Cover?
Flood insurance issued by the United States National Flood Insurance Program covers loss and damage to dwellings and or property caused by...
Does Home Insurance Cover Water Damage?
Water damage caused by appliance malfunctions, plumbing problems and other household events may be covered by a home insurance policy. But homeowners...
Does Car Insurance Cover a Flooded Vehicle
If you are an insured driver and your car has been flooded, you may have more and better coverage than you think....
What Is Flood Insurance Coverage?
Flood insurance coverage provides protection to a home or other property against damage from flooding. A variety of events can cause flood...
Will Homeowner's Insurance Cover Sump Pump Failure?
Homeowner's insurance can be confusing, but it's an essential purchase if you own a home. If you have a mortgage, your lender...
Are Basement Leaks Covered by Home Insurance?
The homeowner's insurance contract and interpretation control your insurance coverage. Some homeowner's insurance policies cover only named perils and others cover everything...