Home and Auto Insurance in Florida

Does Home Insurance in Florida Cover Flood?

Missing Coverage on Home Insurance can be Costly

Here in Florida, most policies include Wind coverage, which comes with a Hurricane Deductible.

Although some may assume this means they have a full hurricane coverage package, they would be wrong. A standard Home Insurance policy excludes a key coverage that homeowners should strongly consider (even if they don’t live right on or by tidal waters). That coverage is Flood Insurance.

Flood Insurance is a relatively complicated definition, and homeowners often confuse what is (or is not) covered with Flood insurance. Most home insurance policies cover sudden and immediate water damage that comes from broken pipes in the home, overflows from tubs, toilets, sinks, appliances, etc., as well as water that may enter the home through a broken window or damaged roof. The limitations and more “official” definition of the flood exclusion is complex. That said, a very rough explanation is as follows:

When natural water collects, puddles, pools, and then floods into a home at ground level, this is the best explanation of what the flooding exclusion is referencing.

For example, if a tropical storm stalls out over an area and drops 24, 36, or even 40+ inches of rain in a short period of time (which is not terribly uncommon), that rain simply cannot dissipate fast enough, so it begins to puddle and pool before flooding into homes and businesses in the area. That is the situation that most often catches homeowners unprepared, as they simply assumed that because they lived far enough from water that they wouldn’t be flooded.

So, how much damage can really be done? With only 1 or 2 inches of water in a home, damage easily hits $10 – $15 per square foot for things like flooring, trim, wall board, cabinets, and other household furniture and items at ground level.

Should you buy Flood Insurance?

It depends. If you feel the risk is minimal and you are okay keeping the potential damage risk yourself, don’t buy Flood Insurance. If, however, you don’t want to worry about coming up with monies to pay for Flood damage (if or when it happens), adding Flood Insurance is actually less than it used to be with so many new companies providing flood options than just the “old” FEMA Flood policies.

Give us a call… we are happy to talk through options and work up a quote, but please don’t assume that you have Flood coverage on your Homeowners policy, as it would be a big mistake.

Joel Meek

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