The state of South Carolina is 4th in the nation for the number of residents who carry flood insurance policies. Because so many homes and businesses are located in designated flood plains, the owners are required by their lenders to carry flood coverage. Whether or not you live in a designated flood zone, as a South Carolina resident, you run this risk of financial losses due to flood damage. Fortunately, you can protect yourself with a South Carolina flood insurance policy. Flood insurance in South Carolina is also fairly affordable, averaging just $625 per year.
Homeowners insurance and business insurance policies don't provide coverage for losses due to natural flood damage. Only a flood insurance policy through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) or a private insurance company can protect your property investment from overflow events.
A South Carolina independent insurance agent can review flood zone maps with you and answer your questions as well as help you secure a flood insurance policy. But first, here's an overview of South Carolina flood insurance.
Companies that Offer Flood Insurance in South Carolina
If you're a South Carolina resident, you can get flood insurance coverage that's backed and regulated by the federal government through the NFIP. The NFIP is part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Its flood insurance policies are sold by traditional insurance companies.
However, the NFIP's mandated coverage limits for flood insurance are capped at $250,000 for buildings coverage and $100,000 for personal property coverage. You can also choose to get private flood insurance, which provides options for much higher coverage limits, as well as additional protections not offered by the NFIP, including loss of use coverage and replacement cost coverage.
Here are some of the best flood insurance companies in South Carolina:
A South Carolina independent insurance agent can help you find flood insurance coverage through one of these local carriers.
What Does Flood Insurance Cover in South Carolina?
NFIP-provided flood insurance offers two types of coverage: one for the structure of the home itself and another for its contents. You can opt to purchase only one type of coverage, though most homeowners purchase both.
- Buildings coverage: Provides coverage for damages to structural elements of the building and its foundation, plumbing, and electrical systems, furnaces and air conditioning units, built-in appliances, and permanently installed carpeting over unfinished floors. Coverage can be used to protect:
- The building’s foundation
- Plumbing and electrical systems
- Heating and air conditioning units (excluding portable units)
- Built-in appliances
- Permanently installed carpeting over unfinished floors
- Contents coverage: Provides coverage for loss or damage to your personal property or belongings like clothing, furniture, curtains, electronics, window air-conditioners, portable appliances, or anything that was kept above-ground in your home. Flood insurance will not cover contents stored in a basement. Coverage can be used to protect:
- Furnishings, artwork, and other décor
- Clothing, jewelry, and other accessories
- Window unit air conditioners
- Portable appliances
- Merchandise and inventory (for businesses)
- Carpeting and flooring installed over finished floors
Your South Carolina independent insurance agent can help you get equipped with all of each type of flood insurance you need.
What Does Flood Insurance Not Cover in South Carolina?
Your South Carolina flood insurance covers a lot of potential disasters and resulting damage, but it can't cover everything. South Carolina flood insurance won't cover damage caused to the home by mold, mildew, or moisture that the homeowner could've prevented. Certain valuable types of property like important papers, precious metals, and currency are also not covered by flood insurance.
Additionally, some kinds of property found outside the home, including decks and hot tubs, are also excluded from coverage. Finally, landscaping and contents kept in your home's basement are excluded from South Carolina flood insurance coverage.
Is Flood Insurance Required in South Carolina?
If your home is located in a designated flood zone, your mortgage lender may be required by law to ensure your property is protected by a flood insurance policy. Once your mortgage is paid off, you're no longer required to carry this coverage, but given your high potential for costly flood damage, you'd be strongly advised to continue to carry a policy.
However, just because you don't live in a designated flood zone doesn't mean you're not at risk. When heavy downpours from tropical storms saturate the ground, water and sewage line back-ups can cause flooding throughout the state. A reported 18% of all South Carolina properties across the state have a risk of flooding over the next 30 years. So, it's often better to be prepared than face potential financial hardships that flood damage can bring.
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Average Cost of Flood Insurance in South Carolina
Flood insurance rates in South Carolina average $625 annually, which falls well below the current national average of $767 per year. Flood insurance rates in South Carolina may be less expensive than the current national average for many different reasons, including the state's decreased risk of flooding compared to others, as well as its property values. It's important to note that flood insurance rates are not the same in every city or area of South Carolina.
Some additional factors that can affect the cost of your flood insurance premiums include the age of your home, because the older your home is, the more expensive it'd be to rebuild, as well as the types and amounts of coverage you need and the deductible amount you select.
Though higher deductibles can lead to lower monthly or annual premiums, keep in mind that you'd have to pay more out of your own pocket if you had to file a claim. A South Carolina independent insurance agent can help you save as much money as possible on flood insurance near you.
Average South Carolina Flood Insurance Costs by City
The cost of South Carolina flood insurance varies by city. You might pay much more or less for the same amount of coverage in one area than you would two towns over. Union County currently has the best and cheapest rates for flood insurance, at an average of just $236 per year.
Here are a few counties in South Carolina and the average annual rate of flood insurance in each one.
|South Carolina County||Average Annual Cost of Flood Insurance|
South Carolina Flood Insurance FAQs
You're not required by state law in South Carolina to carry flood insurance. However, your mortgage lender may require you to have coverage, especially if you live in a high-risk flood zone.
According to FEMA, flood zone AE is an area that has a 1% chance of flooding annually, and a 26% chance of flooding over a 30-year mortgage. Because of this, residents in South Carolina who live in Flood Zone AE who have mortgages from federally regulated lenders must get flood insurance.
You can find your South Carolina flood zone by visiting FEMA's official website and checking out its flood map. You can enter your specific zip code and instantly find your area's flood zone designation.
The average cost of flood insurance in South Carolina is just $625 per year, which is below the current national average of $767 annually. A South Carolina independent insurance agent can help you find affordable coverage.
Flood Zone VE is a high-risk coastal area in SC. It refers to a flood zone with velocity hazards due to wave action. Homes in this flood zone may be more at risk of flood disasters and other damage.
Flood insurance is a type of coverage that protects your home or business against natural flood damage, which is excluded by traditional home insurance or business insurance policies. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was created by the federal government in the 1960s to protect homeowners from the devastating financial hardships flood damage can bring to a community.
The funding is backed by the federal government. The monthly price of an NFIP flood insurance policy is usually drastically lower than payments on a FEMA-provided low-interest loan would be, and securing this coverage is a good way for homeowners and renters to safeguard their investments. You cannot be turned down for flood insurance because you live in a high-risk area.
How to Obtain a South Carolina Flood Insurance Policy
Though flood insurance is offered by the federal government, it must be obtained through a qualified insurance provider. Getting flood insurance for your home is easy with the help of a South Carolina independent insurance agent. Your agent can help you determine how much coverage you need and can show you how much different coverage options will cost.
An independent insurance agent can do more than just help you secure a South Carolina flood insurance policy. Independent insurance agents in South Carolina are available to assist you with all your insurance-related needs and can even file claims for you down the road. Contact a South Carolina independent insurance agent today for more information and to receive South Carolina flood insurance quotes that will fit your needs and budget.
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