Most homeowners and renters insurance policies do not cover flood damage

Separate flood insurance policies are available through private companies or a national program administered by FEMA.

Hurricane Ian recently hit Florida as a hazardous Category 4 storm.

The storm has already brought torrential rain and a life-threatening storm surge to the state, causing flooding in many areas.

Before the storm, some persons on social media claimed that homeowners insurance policies typically do not cover flood damage. Google search data shows people are also asking if renters’ insurance policies cover flood damage and how to get flood insurance.


Do homeowners’ and renters’ insurance policies usually cover flood damage from hurricanes?



That's wrong.

No, homeowners’ and renters’ insurance policies typically do not cover flood damage from hurricanes.


Homeowners Insurance provides people with financial protection in the event of a disaster or accident affecting their home. Standard policies insure the home itself and personal belongings. Insurance policies for renters cover the cost of replacing personal belongings and accidents and injuries.

But homeowners’ and renters’ insurance typically doesn’t cover certain catastrophe-related damages.

The Insurance Information Institute (III) and insurance company all states Let’s say standard insurance policies for homeowners and renters typically don’t cover flood damage. That includes flooding caused by or as a result of a hurricane, Allstate says.

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Instead, people can purchase separate flood insurance policies from a private company or the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

These policies can cover buildings like your home, the contents within, or both. Most offer coverage of up to $250,000 for residential buildings and $100,000 for personal items. Says Amica Insurance.

Flood insurance through the NFIP is available to anyone living in any of the 23,000 participating communities in the United States.

To get flood insurance, people can call their insurance company or agent. You can use one too online tool is offered by the federal government to help locate a flood insurance provider or call the NFIP at 877-336-2627.

According to Amica, there can be a 30-day waiting period before flood insurance comes into effect. There are some exceptions, including for people buying a home, but it’s best not to wait until experts forecast severe weather in your area to buy coverage.

For those who didn’t purchase coverage ahead of a storm, FEMA also offers assistance to people living in areas that have received a presidential disaster declaration.

But Florida’s emergency management department warns The average FEMA payout to people living in the state after a disaster is reported is about $5,100, which may not be enough to cover repairs. This compares to an average payout of about $29,000 for people filing flood damage claims through the NFIP.

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People without flood insurance may still find that their home insurance offers some protection during a hurricane.

Some policies offer wind protection, for example, and could offer protection if a hurricane’s winds damage your roof and rain gets in as a result, AllState says. However, some policies partially or fully exclude wind-related damage, so it’s important that you read your homeowners insurance policy or call your agent to verify what coverage you have.

Standard insurance for homeowners and renters generally do not cover earthquake damage, either. However, they generally cover damage caused by fire after an earthquake and any costs you incur if you live elsewhere while the repairs are being made.

Forest fire damage to your home and property often overcast through standard homeowners insurance policies, although specific coverage varies by location and policy.

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Laura Coffey

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