Floods can happen anywhere, even if you live in an area that has never experienced a flood before. Floods are typically caused by hurricanes, overtopped levees, outdated or clogged drainage systems, and rapid accumulation of rainfall. Homeowners insurance and business insurance policies do not provide coverage for damage due to floods. That’s why the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was created in 1968. It helps property owners financially protect themselves from flood damage. Flood insurance from the NFIP is available to homeowners, renters, condo owners, and business owners. Tupelo residents can buy flood insurance from a local independent insurance agent.
Do I Need Flood Insurance in Tupelo, MS?
Residents of Tupelo should consider purchasing flood insurance. Floods and flash floods happen in all 50 states, and property owners in Tupelo have a reason for concern. Floods are typically caused by hurricanes, overtopped levees, outdated or clogged drainage systems, and rapid accumulation of rainfall. Flooding is common along the Mississippi River after the spring thaw. It is also becoming more common due to improper land use for new construction and development.
Remember, your homeowners insurance or commercial property insurance does not cover flood damage, and just a few inches of water can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage to your home. If your home or business were flooded, how would you pay for repairs and replacing your destroyed possessions? Even if a federal disaster declaration is made in your area, disaster assistance is either a loan that must be paid back with interest or a small grant that probably won’t cover the costs to rebuild your property.
Average Rainfall and Flooding in Tupelo, MS
Heavy rain near bodies of water is the number one cause of flooding. Tupelo receives more rainfall each year than the national average.
- US average annual rainfall: 38.61 inches
- Tupelo average annual rainfall: 55.00 inches
Flooding can occur with very little warning and can cause a tremendous amount of property damage for citizens of Tupelo. Low-lying areas are particularly susceptible to flooding. In Tupelo, heavy storms, runoff, and poor drainage can cause floods. Tupelo residents need to be aware of the flood risk in their neighborhood in order to assess their need for flood insurance. If you live in a designated Special Flood Hazard area or high-risk area and you have a federally backed mortgage, your mortgage lender will require you to have flood insurance. Flood insurance is optional for all other homeowners.
How Much Does Flood Insurance Cost in Tupelo?
The cost of flood insurance from the NFIP varies depending on how much insurance is purchased, what it covers, and what the flood risk of your property is. The program determines the flood risk of property by analyzing the history of floods in the area, as well as other factors such as typical rainfall, river flow, and tidal surge data, topography, flood-control measures, and changes due to building and development.
The data is then used to create flood hazard maps that show the degree of risk for your community. These maps help to determine the cost of flood insurance for your property. Home and business owners in low- to moderate-risk areas may be eligible for a Preferred Risk policy, which can be very affordable and will provide both building and contents coverage. The annual premium for a Preferred Risk flood insurance policy will probably be far less than the cost of making repairs on your own or paying back a federal disaster loan.
What Does Flood Insurance Cover?
Flood insurance covers physical damage to your property and possessions. Building and contents coverage are purchased separately (Preferred Risk policies offer an option for combined coverage) and have separate deductibles.
Building coverage pays for damage to:
- The building and its foundation
- Electrical and plumbing systems
- Central air conditioning equipment, furnaces, and water heaters
- Refrigerators, stoves, and built-in appliances
- Permanently installed carpeting over unfinished flooring
- Permanently installed paneling, wallboard, bookcases, and cabinets
- Window blinds
- Detached garages
- Debris removal
Contents coverage pays for damage to your belongings:
- Clothing, furniture, and electronics
- Portable and window air conditioners
- Portable appliances, e.g., microwave ovens and dishwashers
- Carpets that are not included in the building coverage
- Clothes washers and dryers
- Food freezers and the food in them
- Certain valuable items such as original artwork and furs, up to $2,500
Coverage for basements and areas below the lowest elevated floor is limited. Remember that the cause of the flooding determines whether your flood insurance policy provides coverage. Damage caused by a sewer backup, for example, is only covered by flood insurance if it is a direct result of flooding. If the backup is caused by some other problem, the damage is not covered by your Mississippi flood insurance policy.
What Is Not Covered by Flood Insurance?
Flood insurance policies don’t cover everything. It’s important to understand the coverage exclusions to make sure you are fully prepared. Here are just a few examples of items excluded from coverage in your Mississippi flood insurance policy:
- Damage caused by moisture, mildew, or mold that could have been avoided by the property owner or which are not caused by the flood
- Temporary living expenses, such as hotel expenses, while the building is being repaired or is uninhabitable
- Loss of income caused by business interruption
- Property and belongings outside of the home or business, such as trees, plants, wells, septic systems, walks, decks, patios, fences, seawalls, hot tubs, and swimming pools
Why Work with an Independent Insurance Agent?
You can purchase NFIP flood insurance from a licensed independent insurance agent in Tupelo. Local agents are your best source for determining your flood risk, and they can help you purchase flood insurance that meets the needs of your home or business.
Contact an insurance agent in Tupelo for information and quotes.
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