In July 2018, residents of Santa Fe experienced a significant amount of damage due to what has been deemed a 1,000 year flood. Rushing waters turned area roadways into rivers and damaged numerous homes and businesses. Those who were protected by flood insurance had coverage against this devastating event. If it happens again, will you be prepared?
Flood insurance takes 30 days to go into effect, so do not wait until monsoon season is starting to purchase this important coverage. An independent insurance agent in Santa Fe can help you obtain a suitable, yet affordable, flood insurance policy.
What Is Flood Insurance?
Homeowners insurance, renters insurance, and business insurance go a long way toward covering your assets and protecting your finances. However, these policies specifically exclude flood damage from their coverage.
Fortunately, in 1968 the US federal government created the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to protect property owners from losing everything due to floods. Through this program, individuals and business owners can purchase affordable flood insurance policies through a federally backed program.
You cannot be turned down for coverage, and your rates will not increase after filing a claim. A flood insurance policy will be there to help you rebuild and replace lost property if your home or business is damaged due to rising waters.
How Much Does Flood Insurance Cost in Santa Fe, NM?
Flood insurance is provided by the US government, and rates are standard across the United States. Filing a claim will not cause your rates to increase, and you cannot be turned down for coverage if your property is located in a high-risk flood-zone. Flood insurance costs are based on:
- Whether your property is located in a high-risk, medium-risk, or low-risk area: Risks are determined according to FEMA-drawn flood maps. Those in low-risk areas can get Preferred Risk policies at much lower rates.
- How much coverage you are purchasing: You can decide how much structural and contents coverage you wish to include in your policy, up to a designated limit.
- The amount of your deductible: The lower your deductible, the higher your cost. The minimum deductible permitted on a flood insurance policy is $1,000.
Overall, homeowners in high-risk areas pay an average of about $700 a year, while those with Preferred Risk policies pay about $300 a year. Talk to an independent insurance agent to learn how much a flood insurance policy for your Santa Fe home or business will cost you.
Average Rainfall and Flooding in Santa Fe
Don’t let the comparatively low average rainfall in the city of Santa Fe fool you. This city can still experience problems with flooding.
- US average annual rainfall: 38.61 inches
- Santa Fe average annual rainfall: 14.21 inches
Monsoon season runs from July 15 through September 30. During this time, Santa Fe residents may be subjected to prolonged heavy rainfalls that saturate the ground and overwhelm drainage systems. As a result, arroyos can be washed away and waters can continue to rise as the rains continue.
Do I Need Flood Insurance in Santa Fe, NM?
Mortgage companies require property owners in high-risk flood zones to carry flood insurance. Depending on your lender, this coverage may or may not be required if you live in a medium-risk area. Once you own your property outright, however, flood insurance becomes optional.
This is not to say you should forgo coverage if it is not required. Even homes and businesses in low-risk areas can experience expensive flood damage during the summer monsoon season. You may be surprised to learn that according to FEMA, about 20% of all flood insurance claims filed are for properties that are located in low-risk areas.
Although you may think that that you can skip the coverage because FEMA will help you pay to rebuild following a major storm, this assistance is merely in the form of a guaranteed low-interest loan, and the help only comes if the flood area is declared a federal disaster. Having flood insurance can save you a lot of money if your property is impacted by rising waters.
What Does Flood Insurance Cover?
Flood insurance is made up of two parts: structural coverage and contents coverage. Depending on your circumstances, you can purchase just one or both types of coverage.
- Structural coverage: This covers damage to your property’s foundation as well as structural equipment such as electrical systems, plumbing, water heaters, furnaces, built-in appliances, and permanently installed carpeting over unfinished floors. Homeowners can purchase a maximum of $250,000 in structural coverage, while businesses may purchase up to $500,000.
- Contents coverage: This covers personal belongings kept in above-ground parts of your home or business such as furniture, electronics, portable appliances, and merchandise. In basements, it covers only appliances that are normally kept in that part of the house such as washing machines, dryers, and freezers. Homeowners can purchase a maximum of $100,000 in contents coverage, while businesses have a coverage limit of $500,000.
Talk to your 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, other than appliances that are normally kept in a basement, personal property stored in this part of the home is not covered by flood insurance.
Additionally, flood insurance will not cover:
- Clean-up and remediation of mold and mildew
- Structural damage caused by earth movement like mudslides
- Personal property that is kept outside, such a swing sets and lawn furniture
- Damage or loss of currency and important documents
- Claims for damage that occurred within 30 days of your policy purchase
Talk to an independent insurance agent to learn more about the limitations of a flood insurance policy.
Why Work with an Independent Insurance Agent in Santa Fe, NM?
You can ask an independent agent in Santa Fe for assistance when you are shopping for flood insurance. These insurance professionals live and work in your community, so they are familiar with the risks you face when it comes to floods and other natural disasters.
Contact an insurance agent in Santa Fe to learn more about flood insurance as well as any other insurance products that may be of benefit to you.
©2020, Consumer Agent Portal, LLC. All rights reserved.