Flood insurance

Homeowner and commercial insurance policies typically do not cover flood damage.

If your property is located in a flood-prone area (a "Special Flood Hazard Area"), your lender will likely require you to have flood insurance. Even if you live in a minimal or moderate flood hazard area, you may still want to buy flood insurance.

When your policy takes effect

  • National Flood Insurance Program policies go into effect 30 days after the policy is written, unless the policy is required to qualify for a mortgage.
  • Surplus lines policies typically don't have a waiting period.

Tips on flood cleanup and insurance claims

  • Don't attempt to drive through flooded roadways.
  • Check for structural damage before re-entering your home or business. Flood-damaged buildings can collapse. Be cautious about gas leaks or energized wiring in flooded basements.
  • If you have damage, call your insurer or agent.
  • Take photos or video. Make a list of lost or damaged items.
  • Even if you didn't have flood insurance, you may qualify for some federal emergency grants or loans.
  • Talk to your insurer before making permanent repairs or disposing of damaged property.
  • Save receipts from any mitigation efforts (sandbags, pumps, etc.) for possible insurer reimbursement.
  • If you have to move, make sure your insurer or agent has a way to reach you.
  • Save receipts for temporary repairs, temporary housing, food, etc.

See also

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