From Tuscon to Flagstaff, Arizona is no stranger to flash floods. Many residents of the Grand Canyon State do not realize their homeowners insurance policy isn't sufficient to cover their losses from rising flood waters until the damage is done and it's too late. Only a comprehensive insurance policy with flood coverage can protect your home and assets from being swept away with the current.
Before you search for flood insurance quotes, however, there are several factors to consider.
According to the National Flood Insurance Program:
In 1968, Congress created the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to help provide a means for property owners to financially protect themselves. The NFIP offers flood insurance to homeowners, renters, and business owners if their community participates in the NFIP. Participating communities agree to adopt and enforce ordinances that meet or exceed Federal Emergency Management Agency requirements to reduce the risk of flooding. Fortunately, most AZ municipalities participate in the NFIP and the insurance protection it provides is available to residents.
Since standard homeowners insurance doesn't cover flooding, it's important to have protection from the floods associated with heavy rains, flash floods, and other rising water conditions that impact Arizona.
The NFIP, in conjunction with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, has developed flood plain maps for those areas at the highest risk of rising waters. Several scenarios exist where you may be required to carry flood insurance protection. If you reside within a high-risk area in AZ, or your business is located on such a flood plain, the lender with which you secured the loan to purchase the property may require you to carry flood insurance. If your loan is federally backed, such as an HUD loan or a VA loan, you will be required to get an NFIP policy.
Even if it's not required by your lender or the federal mortgage backer, flood insurance is a good idea to protect your home and assets from flood damage.
Most insurance providers who partner with the NFIP will offer you a choice of three common flood insurance policies:
For standard dwelling coverage, you have two options:
The NFIP strongly recommends homeowners purchase both coverage options. You should speak to your lender, as they may have certain requirements for the type of flood insurance you should carry.
Building property and personal property coverage will protect most things in your home, with some exceptions. For example, you will not be reimbursed for damage to most cars and ATVs, or any belongings outside the building. You may want to consider obtaining comprehensive insurance coverage for your vehicles in order to fully protect them from flood damage if you only carry liability or collision coverage.
For the structure of your home, insurance providers will give you two options for coverage:
With flood insurance, you can only cover the contents of your home at actual cash value.
Fortunately, the partnership between Arizona insurance providers and the NFIP holds premiums to certain standards and they cannot vary from one insurance company to another.
A number of factors are considered when determining your flood insurance premium quote, includng:
For homes in high-risk areas (e.g., Special Flood Hazard Areas or AE, VE Zones) built after the first Flood Insurance Rate Maps were drawn for that community, the elevation of the building in relation to the base flood elevation is also required.
According to the NFIP, the average flood insurance quote is around $600 per year. However, for those located outside a flood hazard area, premium quotes can be as little as $130 per year.
The last thing you want to worry about while you are taking your family to safety during a flash flood is whether your insurance will cover your losses. Independent insurance agents on the Trusted Choice® network are always here to help answer your questions about flood insurance, suggest coverage options, and even assist you in filing a claim.
These agents have years of experience working with Arizona insurance providers and the NFIP, enabling them to find the best coverage at the lowest rates. Flood insurance is complicated, but it's made easy when you work with an experienced agent. Contact a Trusted Choice agent near you to find out how you can secure a flood insurance policy that meets your needs and budget.