Why Do I Need Flood Insurance?
When we think of floods, we usually think of natural disasters – like hurricanes – that destroy homes. But floods can happen pretty much anywhere, and it doesn’t take a hurricane to cause thousands of dollars in water damage.
According to FEMA, just 1 inch of water can cause more than $25,000 in damages, with the average flood damage claim totaling $52,000. Here’s what you need to know about flood insurance in Houston to protect your home from rising water.
Why Should I Buy Flood Insurance?
Floods are not covered by homeowner’s insurance, which is why supplemental flood insurance is available through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
Take a look at FEMA’s map portal to see if your home is in a high-risk, moderate-risk, or low-risk flood zone. Note that the map doesn’t consider dams, which can cause significant damage if they fail or overflow. If your home is near a dam but labeled low-risk, you still might want to consider getting flood insurance.
How Much Does Flood Insurance in Houston Cost?
This depends on where you live, but in general, flood insurance in Houston costs around $700 per year. Work with your insurance agent to determine the best way to pay, whether annually or monthly, so you can fit this important insurance into your budget.
Who Can Get Flood Insurance?
Homeowners who live in high-risk flood zones are usually required by their mortgage lenders to carry flood insurance. These homes are determined to have a 25% chance of flooding within 30 years, which is the typical length of a mortgage.
Even if you don’t live inside a high-risk flood zone, you’re still at risk. Floods can happen anywhere, not just areas that are near large bodies of water. Nearly everyone in the U.S. is eligible for flood insurance. You can check FEMA’s website to see if your community participates in the national flood insurance program.
What Causes Flooding?
Flooding can happen to nearly any home for a variety of reasons. Some of the most common reasons for floods are:
- Natural disasters: Nearly 90% of all the natural disasters that take place in the U.S. result in flooding.
- Excessive rain: Just 1 inch of rain can seep into your home and cause water damage.
- Dam failure: There are over 80,000 dams in the country, and nearly 14,000 of them are deemed a high risk for damage if they fail. Storms and dam overflows can also cause water damage. If you live downstream of a dam, your home could be at risk for flooding.
- Construction/new development: This can change how water drains and lead to unintentional flooding near the site of construction or new development.
What Types of Floods Are Not Covered By Flood Insurance?
FEMA has specific requirements for which floods are covered by your flood insurance policy. Floods that are not covered by flood insurance include plumbing backups and roof leaks. Instead, these types of floods might be covered by your homeowner’s insurance policy.
Call Texan and we’ll make sure you understand what your Houston homeowner’s insurance covers and what your Houston flood insurance covers.
What Damage Does Flood Insurance Cover?
The two main areas that flood damage covers are your home’s structure and the contents inside it. Here are some things that flood insurance will cover:
- Electrical and plumbing systems
- Central air and heat systems
- Water heaters
- Some appliances, including refrigerators, stoves, dishwashers, washers, dryers and built-ins
- Electronic devices
- Portable microwaves
However, flood insurance doesn’t cover everything, so review your policy carefully. Here’s a list of things flood insurance does not cover.
- Loss of income
- Precious metals
- Stock and bond certificates
- Septic systems
- Swimming pools
- Hot tubs
- Sewer backup damages
Federal flood insurance coverage is also capped at $250,000 per building and $100,000 for contents, though you can purchase policies with lower limits.
How Do I Buy Flood Insurance?
Your insurance agent can work with you to make sure you have the right flood insurance coverage. Unlike other types of insurance, flood insurance is government-backed and is underwritten through the NFIP. That means your rates and coverage will be the same no matter which insurance agency you go through.
To read more about flood insurance in Houston, visit our flood insurance page. To find out how much flood insurance will cost you annually, contact us. Our quoting process is fast and easy! We’ll make sure you have the right coverage to keep you and your belongings protected.
Want to learn more? Check out more frequently asked questions on flood insurance here.