The good news for residents of Orlando is that this city is relatively immune to experiencing significant flood damage. With its porous soil and high elevation, damaging floods are rare. This is not to say that the risk does not exist. In August 2019, heavy rains left many motorists stranded in flood waters, and some of this city’s suburbs, like DeBary, are prone to experiencing floods.
Flood insurance can protect property owners who are at risk for experiencing damage. These policies take 30 days to go into effect, so don't wait until heavy rains are imminent to make a purchase. An independent insurance agent in Orlando can help you secure suitable, yet affordable, coverage.
What Is Flood Insurance?
Conventional insurance policies like home insurance, renters insurance, and business insurance do not cover flood damage if the flooding is caused by rising waters. This became a problem, as major floods had the potential to wipe out entire neighborhoods and destroy people’s finances. Without insurance coverage available, there was nothing that anyone could do to protect themselves.
That is why, in 1968, the federal government created the National Flood Insurance Program. This program aims to reduce the impact of flooding on private and public structures by providing flood insurance to property owners, renters, and businesses.
How Much Does Flood Insurance Cost in Orlando, Florida?
On average, US residents pay about $700 a year for flood insurance. In Florida, the average cost is $550. However, because most of Orlando is in a low-risk zone due to its high elevation and effective drainage systems, policies in this city average under $300 a year for coverage.
Your rates will be most affected by:
- Whether your property is in a low-, medium-, or high-risk zone
- The amount of structural and contents coverage you are purchasing
- The amount of your deductible
Talk to a local insurance agent for help reviewing flood maps in the Orlando area and to learn how much a flood insurance policy will cost you.
Average Rainfall and Flooding in Orlando
The city of Orlando sees significantly more rainfall than most of the country.
- US average annual rainfall: 38.61 inches
- Orlando, FL average annual rainfall: 53.17 inches
Fortunately, most of the water is absorbed by the ground and managed by a sophisticated drainage system. Occasionally, however, these systems can be overwhelmed, and property can be damaged by flood waters.
Do I Need Flood Insurance in Orlando, FL?
Very few areas of Orlando are designated by FEMA as high-risk flood areas. If your home or business is located in a Special Flood Hazard Area, your mortgage lender will require you to carry a flood insurance policy. Homeowners in low- or moderate-risk areas are typically not required by lenders to have this coverage. Once your mortgage is paid in full, the flood insurance becomes optional.
However, even though nearly all homes and businesses in Orlando are in low-risk zones, this does not mean the risk does not exist. According to FEMA, 20% of all flood claims are filed by homeowners who don't live in flood zones. Fortunately, property owners in low- risk zones can get their coverage at very low prices.
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What Does Flood Insurance Cover?
Flood insurance is made up of two parts: structural coverage and contents coverage. Depending on your circumstances, you can opt to purchase just one or both types of coverage.
This covers damage to your property’s foundation and structural equipment such as electrical and plumbing systems, water heaters, furnaces, built-in appliances, and permanently installed carpeting over unfinished floors. Homeowners may purchase a maximum of $250,000 in structural coverage, while businesses may purchase up to $500,000.
This covers personal belongings kept on main living floors such as furniture, clothing, electronics, portable appliances, and carpeting. It also covers items normally kept in a basement such as your washing machine, dryer, and freezer. Homeowners can purchase a maximum of $100,000 in contents coverage, while businesses have a limit of $500,000.
Talk to a local independent insurance agent for help determining how much of each type of coverage is right for you.
What Is Not Covered by Flood Insurance?
Homeowners with finished basements are often surprised to learn that outside of appliances normally kept in a basement, property in this part of your house is not covered by flood insurance.
Flood insurance also will not cover:
- Mold and mildew removal and remediation
- Structural damage caused by earth movement, even when it is the direct result of a flood
- Property stored outside your home, such as lawn furniture and above-ground pools
- Landscaping features, trees, wells, ans septic systems
- Currency and important documents
- Temporary accommodations if your home is made uninhabitable by flood waters
- Claims filed within 30 days of your policy purchase
Talk to your local independent insurance agent to learn more about the limitations of a flood insurance policy.
Why Work with an Independent Agent in Orlando, FL?
You can turn to an independent agent in Orlando for assistance when you are shopping for a flood insurance policy for your home or business. These insurance professionals can serve as a great resource when it comes to all of your insurance needs.
Contact an insurance agent in Orlando to learn more about flood insurance and to get answers to any insurance-related questions you may have.
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