Flood insurance isn’t something to look over, especially if you live in a part of the country prone to hurricanes. If you have a basement, you should think about getting coverage anyway since they can flood during heavy rainfall. You’ll know if floods are more likely to happen in your state if flood insurance is more expensive, but do you specifically need it? Let’s look at what flood insurance covers, so you can make your own choice.
Standard Home Insurance
Homeowners insurance doesn’t cover any flood damage, but it will cover a small amount if it rains. If your home is overrun from rising bodies of water like streams, rivers, oceans, or lakes, you won’t be covered.
There are 2 Standard Insurance Packages from NFIP
The National Food Insurance Program of the US covers your personal property, or your actual home. Home insurance covers up to $250,000, while personal property is up to $100,000. If the damage is too severe for you to clean up yourself, consider hiring a restoration company.
What It Covers
NFIP covers the cost to rebuild, or the value of the home – whichever is the cheapest. Home insurance covers the following damages.
- The foundation of your home
- Plumbing and electrical systems
- Furnaces, water heaters, and air conditioners
- Most kitchen appliances like stove, dishwasher and refrigerator
- Installed carpeting
- Installed paneling, wallboards, cabinets, and bookcases
- Garages that are detached
- Removal of debris
- Water heaters
Personal property insurance covers your own property. Personal property covers the following damages.
- Electronic equipment, clothing, furniture
- Detachable AC units
- Detached dishwashers and microwaves
- Carpets that aren’t permanently attached
- Washer and dryer
- Deep freezers and food kept inside
- Valuables up to $2500
Keep in mind that personal possession claims are based on what the item is worth at the time they’re destroyed. If you have something that’s priceless, it may not be covered. It’s best to keep receipts on the upper floor so you can prove your purchase.
Basements have Limited Coverage
It’s a great idea to get coverage for your basement because it’s the most likely to be flooded. Basements have limited coverage though, so if you’re getting it just for a flooded basement your insurance won’t cover the following damages.
- Tile, carpeting, floor coverings
- Some drywall
- Window treatments
- Personal property
What the NFIP will Never Cover
If you have anything in a safe box, or if it belongs in a bank like bearer bonds, precious metals, stock certificates and cash it won’t be covered. Not only are the more expensive, but they’re difficult to prove. NFIP won’t cover the following damages.
- Boat houses
- Swimming pools
- Septic systems
- Plants and trees
- Hot tubs
- Sewer backups
- Retaining walls
- Post-flood mold damage
- Storm shelters
- Loss of income
- Temporary housing
The Fine Print
Water that severely damages your home could be covered by the NFIP depending on the circumstance. For example, you could be given up to $30,000 to move your home. Coving your home will cost around $600-$800 a year, but it depends on your deductible.