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Do I Need Flood Insurance Even If I Don’t Live In a High Risk Flood Zone?

With all the flooding that goes on in the U.S., you’d think more people would carry flood insurance. Despite all those newscasts depicting scenes of homes getting swept away by a river running down Main Street, only about 20% of homeowners actually carry flood insurance.

We all know that floods happen more often in certain areas. These places are federally designated flood zones, and if you live in one, it’s likely that your mortgage lender requires you to carry flood insurance.

But what if you don’t live in a flood zone is it really necessary to buy flood insurance?

Before we answer that question, let’s clear up a few misconceptions concerning flood insurance.

What flood insurance covers

If you thought floods were covered in your regular home insurance policy, you’d be wrong. You purchase flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which is run by the federal government.

Flood insurance doesn’t cover all water damage—it only covers your house in the event of natural flooding that affects at least two acres of land or at least two properties. That means if you’ve got a busted water pipe, then flood insurance won’t cover you (but your home policy probably will). But if a nearby river overflows its banks and floods your neighborhood, then you’d better have flood insurance or you’ll be left holding the bill.

It’s also important to note that flood insurance only insures your home’s structure for up to $200,000 and your belongings for up to $100,000. If your home is valued at more than that, then you can purchase additional flood insurance from a private insurer—but the extra coverage won’t kick in until the $200,000 has been met by the NFIP.

What if I don’t live in a high risk flood zone?

Now that we’ve cleared up what flood insurance does and does not cover, let’s move on to the original question: if you don’t live in a designated flood zone, is it worth it to still purchase flood insurance?

The truth is that over a quarter of flood damage occurs outside of federally designated flood zones. Floods happen in all 50 states, and when it comes down to it, there isn’t a single house in the U.S. that is completely safe from flooding. Weather is inherently unpredictable, and a torrential rain storm could strike anywhere.

If you happen to live in a flood zone, then your mortgage company probably requires you to buy flood insurance. For those of who don’t live in a flood zone, it’s up to you whether you want to purchase flood insurance or not.

The good news is that coverage is much less expensive if you don’t live in a flood zone. The chances might be low that you’ll ever need flood insurance, but the cost is also very low. You have much more to lose if you chose to go without.

For help finding flood insurance in Moreno Valley, contact Best Insurance Services today!