Did you know? Flood losses are not typically covered by your homeowner's policy. Flood insurance is generally written as a separate policy. Floods do not only occur in coastal areas of Florida. The entire state is relatively low lying and many flood claims filed are from insureds not in a 'special hazard flood zone.'
Flood Insurance is such a big deal that the Federal Government runs a National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The government draws a Flood Hazard Boundary Map that divides the country into flood zone risk areas, and their Flood Insurance Rate Map sets the premiums for those areas. You can enter your address at https://www.floodsmart.gov/flood-map-zone/find-yours to find out your risk.
In recent years, private flood insurance markets have started to open up. Many of these markets offer more coverage at a lower rate than the NFIP. Also included are additional coverages such as Additional Living Expense and Replacement Cost on Personal Property.
- Flooding and flash floods can occur anytime and anywhere in the state
- Don't rely on Federal Disaster Assistance alone
- Flood insurance is more affordable than you think
- According to FEMA, there is a 1 in 4 chance of flooding if you are located in a high risk area
- You live in Florida, we are surrounded by water
Flooding can happen anywhere, but certain areas are especially prone to serious flooding. To help communities understand their risk, flood maps (Flood Insurance Rate Maps, FIRMs) have been created to show the locations of high-risk, moderate-to-low risk, and undetermined-risk areas. Here are the definitions for each:
High-risk areas (Special Flood Hazard Area or SFHA) High-risk areas have at least a 1% annual chance of flooding, which equates to a 26% chance of flooding over the life of a 30-year mortgage. All homeowners in these areas with mortgages from federally regulated or insured lenders are required to buy flood insurance. They are shown on the flood maps as zones labeled with the letters A or V.
Moderate-to-low risk areas (Non-Special Flood Hazard Area or NSFHA) In moderate-to-low risk areas, the risk of being flooded is reduced, but not completely removed. These areas are outside the 1% annual flood-risk floodplain areas, so flood insurance isn't required, but it is recommended for all property owners and renters. They are shown on flood maps as zones labeled with the letters B, C or X (or a shaded X).
Tropical Storms and Hurricanes—Hurricanes and tropical storms pack a triple threat: high winds, soaking rain, and flying debris. They can cause storm surges to coastal areas, as well as create heavy rainfall which in turn causes flooding hundreds of miles inland. Coastal communities are at the greatest risk, but inland communities can also be affected as we've recently seen.
Heavy Rains—We get some torrential down pours in Florida during the summer months. As we saw in 2008, it doesn't take a tropical storm or hurricane to produce enough rain to flood even our inland communities.
New Development—Construction and development can change the natural drainage and create brand new flood risks. That's because new buildings, parking lots, and roads mean less land to absorb excess precipitation from heavy rains, hurricanes, and tropical storms.
These are flood policies on properties in low to moderate risk areas.
RESIDENTIAL: Preferred Risk Policy (ZONES B, C, X)
Preferred Risk Policies are offered in two types: Building & Contents and Contents Only. These policies come with predetermined coverage and deductible options. We've included a chart below with sample premiums
Preferred Risk Flood Rates
Buildings/Contents // Annual Premium
75,000/30,000 // $352.00
100,000/40,000 // $390.00
125,000/50,000 // $410.00
150,000/60,000 // $436.00
200,000/80,000 // $476.00
250,000/100,000 // $504.00
A flood map of your property can be viewed at: www.fema.gov/hazard/map/firm.shtm