Originally posted on https://hhinsgroup.com/how-to-choose-best-flood-insurance/
Every year in the United States, floods cause around $6 billion worth of damage. When a flood happens, nothing is left untouched. Businesses, green spaces, and even homes can be damaged.
You might think your home is already insured in case of a flood. After all, you have a homeowner insurance policy.
Many people don’t realize their home insurance likely doesn’t cover them in the event of a flood. It’s why you should be shopping around for the best flood insurance.
How can you be sure you’re getting the right coverage for the right price? We’ll walk you through the process of finding flood insurance that fits your needs.
Why You Need Flood Insurance
Many people think their home is already covered if there happens to be a flood. Unfortunately, most homeowner insurance policies don’t cover flood damage. You’ll need to buy a separate insurance policy to protect your home in the event of a flood.
Now you’re asking if you need to make sure you have a policy for floods. Maybe other people do, but you feel your home is well-protected.
The number of natural disasters has been increasing in the US. Florida is particularly vulnerable to certain kinds of disaster. Even if floods are rare in your area, they can still happen.
Catastrophic storms could bring on flooding. A hurricane may not damage your home, but the rainfall could cause flooding after the fact.
Assessing Your Risk
When thinking about buying flood insurance, Florida residents need to assess their risks. While almost any home can be at risk of flooding, it’s true some need more protection than others.
If you live in a low-lying area, near a river, or in a flood plain, you’re going to need more protection. You can contact your insurance agent to determine if your home is in a high-risk area.
You should also research historical flooding in your area. How common have floods been in the past? Has flooding become more common recently?
You may also want to see if you can find information about the cost of historical floods. How much damage did they do?
Another good question to ask is whether your home or one you want to buy has ever made a claim for flooding.
Talk to a Local Insurance Agent
When you’re trying to assess your risk, one thing you can do is talk to a local insurance agent. They should be able to tell you about historic flooding in the area. They may even have information on the property you’re considering.
Your own insurance agent may be able to help in the research process as well.
The National Flood Insurance Program
Flooding is one of the most common natural disasters, and it affects people across the entirety of the US. It’s the reason the federal government has the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
If you have a mortgage on a home in a high-risk area, you’ll likely be required to carry flood insurance.
The NFIP is a good place to start for most homeowners. FEMA gives estimates for the average cost of flood insurance through the program. These flood insurance rates vary from several hundred dollars to a few thousand.
One problem with the NFIP is that it caps your coverage. Your insurance maxes out at $250,000 for damage to your home and $100,000 for personal belongings. For many people, this isn’t enough.
Researching Private Insurance Options
With the NFIP continuing to increase rates, private market flood is becoming more and more available. In addition to saving thousands of dollars in terms of rates, private market options typically offer additional coverage not available from the NFIP.
If you do feel you need private flood insurance, shop around to multiple agencies. HH Insurance has over 20 private flood insurance markets while most agents only have one or two options meaning that HH Insurance often has better flood rates.
Getting Quotes to Find the Best Flood Insurance
Now it’s time to get a flood insurance quote or two. Select a few companies and ask them to provide quotes for flood protection for your property. You can ask them to include different kinds of coverage in their quotes.
This will allow you to get a sense of what particular types of coverage will cost. You can compare the costs of coverage for one provider. Then you can compare quotes for similar coverage between providers.
The best flood insurance will be the policy that gives you the coverage you need at an affordable price. Remember to think about value, not cost. You want the best coverage for the lowest cost.
What to Look for in an Insurance Provider
There’s one more step to making sure you’re getting the absolute best flood insurance for your property.
You want to be sure you’re working with an insurance provider who has your best interests at heart. They’re going to work hard for you, and you want to know you can rely on them if you do ever need to make a claim.
As you gather quotes, think about the customer service you receive from insurance providers. How friendly and helpful are their agents? They should have expertise too.
Great customer service is part of the value of your policy. If you’re not getting good customer service to go with a low price, you’re not getting the best flood insurance.
Get a Quote Today
If you’re still shopping for the best flood insurance, why not contact us for a quote? We can help you get started with the right policy to protect your property.
If you have questions about different types of insurance, take a look around our blog. We have articles and guides designed to help you find peace of mind.