With the flood waters of Hurricane Florence still receding in North and South Carolina we thought it would be appropriate to re-address what exactly is Flood, and then how can you insure against flood damage.
By insurance definition a flood is water that comes from outside the house by wave action, water surge, ground saturation or water runoff. By contrast if a water pipe breaks, a washer hose leaks, or a bath tub overflows, water from the inside of your home, these are not included in flood.
The insurance available for a flood is very limited. To begin with, your home insurance policy has a total exclusion for any flood damage.
Any homeowner is eligible to buy flood insurance through the NFIP, National Flood Insurance Program, but the coverage is limited to $250,000 on the structure and $100,000 on the contents. A very important element of flood insurance is that it only insures the primary residential structure, and contents above the ground floor. There is coverage for your mechanicals (furnace, hot water heater etc.) below the ground floor only. If you have a finished basement, all of the finishes are not insured under a flood policy, and to reiterate, are excluded from coverage on the home insurance policy.
While hurricanes have been happening for 100’s of years, the damage that is so severe in recent times is primarily flood from wave surge pushing water inland and heavy rain with no possibility to drain. The end result of these two factors is that properties that were never considered to be exposed to flood are being inundated by unimaginable water.
It may be time to re-assess your exposure to flood and identify the most appropriate loss control measures to keep an inconvenience from being a disaster.
Contact Kyle for a review – 203-637-6655
[Photo of Binney Park, Old Greenwich by Mary Benoit]