Kansans are no stranger to flooding. In fact, we have experienced several major floods over the years, including the summer floods of 2007, which damaged more than 3,300 structures. If you live in a flood plain, you already know how important flood insurance is. But even if you live outside a high-risk area, you are still at risk of damage. In fact, water can damage homes in many ways besides flooding. Some are covered by homeowners insurance; others are not. Continue reading to find out if you need extra coverage to protect you against possible damages.
Homeowners Insurance Water Damage Coverage
Your homeowners insurance probably includes some standard protection against water damage, although limited. This likely includes coverage for sudden and accidental damages, such as an overflowing toilet or a burst pipe during the winter. There are some things that are typically excluded from coverage, however. Examples include:
- Water damage caused by poor home maintenance
- Sewer and water backup
As soon as you report a water damage claim to your insurance company, the insurer will begin to investigate the cause of the damage. If an adjustor discovers that the water damage behind your kitchen wall was the result of a faucet that had been leaking chronically for several weeks or months, your claim could be denied.
Sewer and Water Backup
Your homeowners insurance probably does not include standard coverage for sewer lines and water backup, but it is coverage you should not be without. According to the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety, drain system failures are among the top causes of water-related losses in the U.S. When water and raw sewage back up into your home, you will need the help of a professional to clean and remediate the damages. Depending on the extent of the damage, you might even be temporarily displaced from your home until it becomes habitable again. Fortunately, sewer and water backup coverage is available through your insurer. Contact an agent here at Integrity Insurance Agency to discuss adding a sewer and water backup endorsement to your homeowners insurance policy.
Floods are not covered by homeowners insurance due to the extremely high costs of flood damage. In fact, flooding is the number one natural disaster in the U.S. every year in terms of cost. However, you can still obtain coverage from our agency through the National Flood Insurance Program, or NFIP.
If it rains nearby your home, you are at risk of flood damage – even if you have no prior history of flooding in your community. The Federal Emergency Management Agency publishes flood maps that help indicate your risk of flood. If you live outside of the high-risk zones, you may qualify for flood insurance coverage for your home and belongings at preferred rates. Keep in mind that many factors contribute to your future risk of flood damage, including changes in your local topography, local construction developments, changing weather patterns, and more.
30-day Waiting Period
If you are purchasing flood insurance to satisfy the requirements of a new mortgage, or if you live in an area that has experienced a recent flood zone change, you may qualify for immediate coverage. Otherwise, most flood insurance policies have a 30-day waiting period before coverage becomes effective.
Have you heard of the National Flood Insurance Program before? Do you currently have coverage against flooding? Contact our agency to speak with a knowledgeable, independent agent to find out more about insuring your home against water damage.