The National Flood Insurance Program
In 1968, Congress created the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) to help provide a means for property owners to financially protect themselves. The NFIP offers flood insurance to homeowners, renters, and business owners if their community participates in the NFIP. Participating communities agree to adopt and enforce ordinances that meet or exceed FEMA requirements to reduce the risk of flooding.
Resources Flood Facts
• In the past 5 years, all 50 states have experienced floods or flash floods.
• Everyone lives in a flood zone. (For more information, visit our Flood Zones FAQs.)
• Homeowners' insurance does not cover flood damage.
• If you live in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) or high-risk area and have a Federally backed mortgage, your mortgage lender requires you to have flood insurance. (To find your flood risk, fill out the Flood Risk Profile.)
• Just a few inches of water from a flood can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage. • Flash floods often bring walls of water 10 to 15 feet high.
• A car can easily be carried away by just two feet of rushing water.
• Hurricanes, winter storms and snowmelt are common (but often overlooked) causes of flooding. • New land development can increase flood risk, especially if the construction changes natural runoff paths.
• Federal disaster assistance is usually a loan that must be paid back with interest. For a $50,000 loan at 4% interest, your monthly payment would be around $240 a month ($2,880 a year) for 30 years. Compare that to a $100,000 flood insurance premium, which is about $400 a year ($33 a month).
• A Preferred Risk Policy provides both building and contents coverage for properties in moderate- to low-risk areas for one low-price.
• You are eligible to purchase flood insurance as long as your community participates in the National Flood Insurance Program. Check the Community Status Book to see if your community is already an NFIP partner.
• In most cases, it takes 30 days after purchase for a policy to take effect, so it's important to buy insurance before the storm approaches and the floodwaters start to rise.
• In a high-risk area, your home is more likely to be damaged by flood than by fire.
• Even though flood insurance isn't federally required, anyone can be financially vulnerable to floods. In fact, people outside of high-risk flood areas file over 20-percent of all National Flood Insurance Program flood insurance claims and receive one-third of Federal Disaster Assistance for flooding
• From 2005 to 2014, total flood insurance claims averaged more than $3.5 billion per year
• When your community participates in the Community Rating System (CRS), you can qualify for an insurance premium reduction discount of up to 45% if you live in a high-risk area and up to 10% in moderate- to low-risk areas
• Since 1978, The NFIP has paid nearly $50 billion for flood insurance claims and related costs (as of 2/17/15)
• There are currently more than 5.3 million flood policies in force across more than 22,000 communities in the U.S.
• The two most common reimbursement methods for flood claims are: Replacement Cost Value (RCV) and Actual Cash Value (ACV). The RCV is the cost to replace damaged property. It is reimbursable to owners of single-family, primary residences insured to at least 80% of the building's replacement cost.
What Is A Flood?
Anywhere it rains, it can flood. A flood is a general and temporary condition where two or more acres of normally dry land or two or more properties are inundated by water or mudflow. Many conditions can result in a flood: hurricanes, overtopped levees, outdated or clogged drainage systems and rapid accumulation of rainfall.
Just because you haven't experienced a flood in the past, doesn't mean you won't in the future. Flood risk isn't just based on history, it's also based on a number of factors: rainfall, river-flow and tidal-surge data, topography, flood-control measures, and changes due to building and development.
Flood-hazard maps have been created to show different degrees of risk for your community, which help determine the cost of flood insurance. The lower the degree of risk, the lower the flood insurance premium.
Why Do I Need It?
Floods and flash floods can occur anytime, anywhere.
Floods happen in all 50 states: on coasts, on mountains, along rivers, in the desert, in towns and cities of every size. In recent years, roughly 25% of all flood insurance claims came from areas not considered high risk.
You can't rely on Federal Disaster Assistance alone.
Many people don't qualify for grants, making the most common form of assistance a disaster home loan. These loans must be repaid: principal plus interest.
Flood claims data confirms that a foot of water can destroy 60% of a building’s personal property contents. Flash flooding usually causes more damage to a building’s contents than damage to the building itself.
You’ll want to think about coverage for your personal property items, as well as the structure of your building. Your personal belongings help make your house, apartment, condominium, mobile home or co-op unit a home. You don’t want to risk losing them in the event of a flood.
Contents Coverage can be purchased for your personal property items located in the building above ground. Personal property items include:
Clothing and furniture
Portable or window-type air-conditioning units
Portable microwaves and portable dishwashers
Carpets over finished flooring located above ground Carpets not permanently installed over unfinished flooring
Food freezers (other than walk-ins, which are covered under Building Coverage)
Clothes washers and dryers
Clothes washers, dryers and food freezers are only covered by Contents Coverage, whether they are located above ground or below ground in a basement.
How Much Is Available?
The maximum personal property Contents Coverage limit available is: Up to $100,000 for contents with a standard National Flood Insurance Policy Up to $60,000 for contents with a Preferred Risk Policy Personal property contents are covered on an actual cash value basis. Replacement Cost Coverage is not available for contents. Please contact me for details. Excess Flood Coverage In some states, if you purchase standard a National Flood Insurance policy or Preferred Risk Flood Insurance through Allstate and find you need more coverage than the maximum limit provided by the NFIP program, you may be eligible to purchase additional coverage through an Excess Flood Insurance policy*** Loss Avoidance Measures The base insurance plan also includes up to $1,000 for reasonable expenses, such as sandbagging, incurred to protect your property from the imminent danger of a flood. Preferred Risk Flood Insurance
How Do I Qualify?
A Preferred Risk Flood Insurance policy is designed for homeowners in low- to moderate-risk flood hazard areas who want to help protect their home and contents in the event of a flood. In order to qualify for a Preferred Risk Flood Insurance policy, you need to own a one- to four-family dwelling in a low- to moderate-risk flood hazard area that meets certain requirements. If your dwelling’s flood loss history falls into any of the categories below, a Preferred Risk Flood Insurance Policy cannot be written. These requirements apply since the date of construction and regardless of your dwelling’s prior ownership: Two loss payments, each more than $1,000 Three or more loss payments, regardless of the amount Two Federal Disaster Relief payments, each more than $1,000 three Federal Disaster Relief payments, regardless of the amount
When determining the flood rates, the Federal Government rewards the efforts of each community to reduce the risk of flood damage. Find out what your community should do to receive great incentives.