When natural disasters, accidents, or other property-threatening events strike, homeowner’s insurance helps get your life back on track as soon as possible. In addition to financially compensating for loss and helping expedite repairs, insurance adds an extra layer of reassurance when local weather reports and headlines sound grim.
This peace of mind, however, only works as long as your coverage does, and that means preparing for anything, even if some issues are more likely to happen than others.
Flooding, for example, is not typically included in traditional homeowner’s insurance policies – and it’s important coverage too many choose to pass up.
Here are a few important reasons to consider getting flood insurance for your new home:
If you live in certain areas, it might not be an option. Properties located in flood plains or near certain bodies of water may be required to get flood insurance as a condition of ownership.
While the property’s sale paperwork and discussion should touch on this if it is a requirement, individual addresses can also be checked in a FEMA flood database for more direct research.
Even a little water can turn into a big problem. Rising water from lakes, rivers, or the ocean aren’t the only sources of aquatic headaches: heavy rains can accumulate just as easily. Even if only an inch of water creeps into places it shouldn’t be, the entire structure of the floor can be damaged, weakened, or infested with health-endangering mold.
If you have young children or pets in the home, even a small mold infestation can become serious or even deadly if left unchecked, making proper cleanup crucial.
Debris won’t be your only concern post-flooding. Speaking of mold and mildew, remember that the uninsured cost of cleanup may be far more than simply removing debris and replacing flooring.
Stagnant or polluted water encroachment during a natural disaster may require sanitization or complete replacement to avoid the spread of deadly mold or bacteria. Those can be very pricey procedures without the cushion of flood insurance coverage.
It’s extremely affordable, especially in comparison to being uninsured. While finding discounts and opportunities to save on homeowner’s insurance is a smart goal, the affordability of flood insurance for low-to-moderate risk homeowners makes it a must.
That being said, be sure to discuss what is and isn’t covered with your insurance agent in detail; most flood insurance policies only cover natural disaster-spurred water encroachment, as opposed to burst pipes or sewer problems.
Flood insurance coverage can incorporate your personal belongings as well as structural damage. Flood damage to floors, walls, and other structural elements is only part of the devastation caused by flooding.
A flood insurance policy can also be written to cover the repair or replacement of personal goods in the event of water intrusion or flooding. Be aware that there will usually be stipulations in regards to heirlooms or items of personal significance. The value of these items – photographs, artwork, etc. – can be discussed and agreed upon when initially creating your policy.
Just like other forms of supplementary insurance, flood insurance offers a layer of protection for your home that stands up to even the worst natural disasters. While excellent construction and preparation can’t turn back a hurricane, this important policy type could be the one tool that keeps unexpected floods from soaking your wallet.