Flood Insurance Information
In 2013 FEMA began the process of redrawing many of the maps that determine who is in a flood zone in Florida, and therefore determine who needs to buy flood insurance. Because of this, it is important that everyone understands what flood insurance covers and how to determine if they need to make this investment.
While practically everyone who owns property in Florida carries homeowner’s or condo insurance on their property, many people don’t carry a separate flood insurance policy. Since the vast majority of homeowner’s policies do not offer any type of protection for a flood, this means that a lot of home and condo owners are vulnerable to this type of loss.
While the most common method of flooding is a storm surge during a tropical storm event, it is also possible to experience a flood during a severe thunderstorm or even a back-up of a stormwater drainage system. Because these events are rarely covered by any other type of insurance, it is necessary to get a flood insurance policy in order to pay for any damage that occurs to structure or belongings during these events.
Flood insurance is typically purchased through FEMA, and many condo owners, especially those who do not live at or below the ground floor of a building, decide to skip the extra expense of this coverage. Depending on the location and construction of a building, however, this can be a mistake. To start, many beach-side condo owners are in flood zones that require them to purchase flood insurance. Furthermore, flood damage can occur in units that are above the ground floor. It is not uncommon for a storm surge to reach over twenty feet in the right circumstances, flooding units above the second floor of a building. Even units beyond this can still have issues accessing their unit due to damage in the common areas of a building.
Flood insurance pays for more than damaged furniture and electronics. It provides funds to make repairs to the structure of your building, including mold and rot removal. Funds are also provided to pay for the increased costs of labor and materials, as well as funds to to compensate for alternative housing while your home is being repaired.