The Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) maps are important when it comes to flood insurance because if they show that your home sits in a 100-year flood plain, you must buy federal flood insurance in order to get a mortgage. If you live outside a high-risk zone, or if you no longer have a mortgage, flood insurance is optional.
For more than 100 years, First American has served the nation with quality insurance products. Now First American Property & Casualty Insurance Company continues this tradition by offering flood insurance products and superior customer service. Products Available: The protection for residential property owners, renters, and business-people is provided through a diverse line of flood insurance products, which include:
- Standard Residential Property Owners' Flood Insurance
- Renters' and Condominium Owners' Flood Insurance
- Business Flood Insurance
- Preferred-Risk Flood Insurance.
"Flood" is defined as a general and temporary condition of partial or complete inundation of normally dry land areas from:
- Overflow of inland or tidal waters,
- The unusual and rapid accumulation or runoff of surface waters from any source, or
- Mudflows caused by flooding.
- Building Property up to $500,000
- Personal Property up to $500,000
Building vs. Contents Coverage
Flood insurance protects two types of insurable property: building and contents. The first covers your building, the latter covers your possessions; neither covers the land they occupy.
Building coverage includes:
- The insured building and its foundation
- The electrical and plumbing system
- Central air conditioning equipment, furnaces, and water heaters
- Refrigerators, cooking stoves, and built-in appliances such as dishwashers
- Permanently installed carpeting over unfinished flooring
Contents coverage includes:
- Clothing, furniture, and electronic equipment
- Portable and window air conditioners
- Portable microwaves and dishwashers
- Carpeting that is not already included in property coverage
- Clothing washers and dryers
Contents losses are always adjusted on an actual cash value basis. That means that you only receive what the item was worth as of day of the loss. For example, if you bought a $300 color television two years ago and it was damaged in a flood, you might only receive about $50 for it, if that is what the equipment was worth on the day of the flood. Your building loss would also be handled this way unless you qualified for replacement cost coverage.
Remember, flood insurance is not meant to restore your home to its original condition, just to get you back on your feet! And, it's much better than having no coverage at all.What’s not covered?
Since standard homeowners insurance doesn't cover flooding, it's important to have protection from the floods associated with hurricanes, tropical storms, heavy rains and other conditions that impact the U.S.
While floods can cause major destruction, the damage caused by floods is not covered by standard Homeowners insurance. A flood insurance policy provides the specialized coverage you need to help protect your home, condo or business from rising waters.Basement Coverage
Flood insurance does not cover basement improvements, such as finished walls, floors, ceilings or personal belongings that may be kept in a basement.
- Crawl Spaces under an elevated building
- Enclosed areas beneath buildings elevated on full-story foundation walls that are sometimes referred to as “walkout basements”
Please speak with your agent for details on basement coverage.Deductible Replacement cost versus actual cash value
Here's an extremely important point. Replacement cost coverage (which pays to replace or restore structure items) is only offered on a limited basis...and only for a single-family dwelling that is your principal residence. To receive replacement cost coverage on the structure, you must be insured for at least 80% of the building's replacement cost at the time of the loss or the maximum amount of coverage available, whichever is less.Deductibles
A deductible is the amount you have to pay out of your own pocket before the insurance coverage kicks in. Standard flood deductibles are $500 and $750. Higher deductibles are available to reduce policy premiums. Please be aware that with flood insurance your deductible will be applied to both your building and its contents, even though they might be damaged by the same flood.Mandatory requirements
In 1968, Congress created the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to help provide a means for property owners to financially protect themselves. The NFIP offers flood insurance to homeowners, renters, and business owners if their community participates in the NFIP. Congress mandated federally regulated or insured lenders to require flood insurance on properties that are located in areas at high risk of flooding.Residents of Moderate-to-Low Risk Areas
Homes and businesses located in moderate-to-low risk areas that have mortgages from federally regulated or insured lenders are typically not required to have flood insurance. However, flood insurance is highly recommended because anyone can be financially vulnerable to floods. People outside of high-risk areas file over 20% of NFIP claims and receive one-third of disaster assistance for flooding. When it's available, disaster assistance is typically a loan you must repay with interest. A lender can require flood insurance, even if it is not federally required.Residents of High-Risk Areas
Homes and buildings in high-risk flood areas with mortgages from federally regulated or insured lenders are required to have flood insurance. In high-risk areas, there is at least a 1 in 4 chance of flooding during a 30-year mortgage.Rates
Flood insurance may not be as expensive as you might think, and the benefits of coverage can vastly outweigh the costs of repairs and replacements. Properties located in low to moderate risk zones, may be eligible for a Preferred Risk Policy (PRP), a low cost option that will allow property owners and businesses to protect themselves against the devastating effects of flooding.30-day waiting period
A flood insurance policy typically has a 30 day waiting period before the policy can become effective. Therefore it is important to plan ahead. Simply call our agency at 1-888-546-5118.Reimbursement
The two most common reimbursement methods for flood claims are : Replacement Cost Value (RCV) and Actual Cash Value (ACV). The RCV is the cost to replace damaged property. It is reimbursable to owners of single-family, primary residences insured to within 80% of the buildings replacement cost.
All other buildings and personal property (i.e. contents) are valued at ACV. The ACV is the RCV at the time of loss minus physical depreciation. Personal property is always vFlood Disaster Tips
Did you know...
Floods and flash floods are the most common natural disaster, occurring in all 50 states. Floods cause devastating damage to buildings and personal belongings. One in three flood insurance claims are generated outside areas considered "flood-prone." Homeowners insurance does not cover flood damage.
Before a flood:
Make a written, photographic and/or videotaped inventory of household possessions and property, and store it in a safe place (e.g., a relative's home or safe deposit box) with insurance policies, documents and other valuables. Take a first aid class from your local American Red Cross chapter. Assemble a disaster supplies kit that includes a first aid kit, canned food, non-electric can opener; bottled water (emergency managers recommend 3 gallons per person), rubber boots, rubber gloves, battery-powered radio, flashlight and extra batteries. Identify evacuation locations.
During a flood:
When a warning is issued, listen to local radio and TV stations for information. When a watch is issued, move furniture and valuables to higher floors of your home. Abandon your car if stalled in rapidly rising waters and climb to higher ground. Do not drive into any large puddles or into water that seems to be moving rapidly.
After a flood:
Call your insurance agent as soon as possible to see if you need to file a claim. Make temporary repairs to prevent further damage. Keep all receipts. Delay permanent repairs until your insurer approves reimbursement. Get any necessary construction permits from your community. Prepare an inventory of all damaged or destroyed personal property. Take photos of damaged areas. Save remnants of damaged or destroyed property for your insurance company adjuster. Meet with your adjuster before signing anything with contractors, lawyers or public adjuster. Let your car dry out before trying to start it.