You can depend on your home insurance policy for certain types of water damage caused by rain, but it all depends on how the damage occurred. For instance, if a storm opens a hole in your roof, allowing water to leak in and destroy valuable personal property, your homeowner’s policy typically offers coverage.
But what about a flood event? When a person thinks of flooding, most remember catastrophic events that have occurred regularly throughout our state when our snow melts during the spring and inundates streams and rivers. But there have been numerous events where summer storms or long periods of wet weather can also create large overland water issues or sudden, uncontrolled pooling of water in low areas.
Your standard homeowner’s insurance policy doesn’t provide protection for flood damage. However, you can purchase a separate flood insurance policy through the National Flood Insurance Program.
What does the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Cover?
You’ll find important coverage with a NFIP policy, which can be purchased through your Nodak Insurance agent. It can offer peace of mind if you’re living in a floodplain or your area’s prone to frequent flooding. Here’s a sampling of what’s covered under the NFIP:
· Your home’s foundations and staircases attached to it
· Your home’s plumbing and electrical systems
· Heat pumps, sump pumps, furnaces, and water heaters
· Built-in appliances like dishwashers,
as well as refrigerators, stoves, etc.
· Permanently installed carpet and flooring
· Unattached garages
· Drywall, wallboard, paneling, and permanently installed cabinets or bookcases
· Window blinds and coverings
· Optional coverage
that can be added for contents
What limitations are there to the coverage afforded in a NFIP flood policy?
Like all insurance policies, there is a list of exclusions that apply to flood insurance. The area underneath what is typically the first floor in a house or property might have only limited flood insurance protection through the NFIP. Specifically, only select items are covered in any areas of a dwelling below the lowest elevated floor (such as a crawl space) and in basements.
For example, in a basement, only the foundation, drywall, insulation, staircases, electrical outlets and switches and central air conditioners are insured when it comes to the structural coverage in your flood insurance policy.
If a policy through the National Flood Insurance Program may be something to consider, please remember:
Your Nodak Insurance agent can help you purchase a flood insurance policy from the NFIP.
You'll typically need to wait 30 days for your policy to go into effect, though there are some exceptions. For instance, if you purchase a flood insurance policy at the same time you take out a mortgage, the insurance may go into effect immediately, according to FEMA.
Also, you may want to consult with your local city or county to see if they participate in the National Flood Insurance Program. There are some limitations regarding availability.
With spring thaw and summer rains coming before we know it, now is the time to discuss your additional needs for flood coverage with your local Nodak Insurance agent. Don’t regret not having the proper coverage in place to protect your biggest investment, your home and property.