It's that time of year when our back yards are once again mini-lakes, our rivers have over flowed their banks and our roads are washed out. People are kayaking where we usually play frisbee golf or on the play ground. People's homes or businesses have flooded. There are people who can't leave or get to their house because the water is too high. Welcome to spring in Minnesota!
We might be jumping for joy to finally see some spring... or maybe summer, ummm or fall like temperatures. Ok, let's be honest - basically it has went like this: winter, winter, winter, winter, 1 day of spring, winter, 3 days of summer, fall and winter again. Who can keep up? Regardless, the snow and ice is melting and our waters continue to rise.
Floods can happen anywhere - just one inch of floodwater has the potential to cause up to $25,000 in damage. Most homeowner/business owners to do not flood insurance. Flood insurance is a separate, stand alone policy that can cover buildings, contents or both. Protection you need if a flood does happen. It is NOT standard on your homeowners policy. As a a matter of fact, most homeowner policies EXCLUDE flood.
As insurance agents, we are always taking classes and training in all areas of insurance so we can be the valuable resource when you need us, when you have questions. The information we are going to share below comes from the FEMA website. This is a great resource for agents and clients both. Be sure to check them out:
FEMA or the Federal Emergency Management Agency is the federal government's lead agency in responding to and recovering from many of the nation's greatest moment of crisis. FEMA supports citizens and emergency personnel to build, sustain and improve the nation's capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from and mitigate all hazards. FEMA also manages the NFIP or National Flood Insurance Program and have a network of over 50 insurance companies along with NFIP direct.
The FEMA site provides a guide to help people understand and navigate their flood risk and provide needed resources to: R.I.S.K. Using this acronym, FEMA provides information about protecting your family and property from flooding. Basic information about floods maps, flood zones, flood risk and flood insurance can help you take action to reduce risk.
R - Reduce your risk
I - Insure your risk
S - Share information on risk
K - Know your risk and your community's risk
FEMA has spent decades investing in data to help inform of flood risk and set flood insurance rates. The flood insurance premium methodology uses that data to get a better understanding of a single property's unique flood risk. It uses several variables when considering risk, including:
* Distance from flooding source
* Flood frequencies beyond 1% annual chance flood event
* River overflow, storm surge, heavy rainfall and property characteristics (such as
distance to water source, elevation and the cost to rebuild).
Defining and identifying your risk will help you be prepared in the event of a flood. FEMA provides a Reduce Flood Risk tool where you can find ways to reduce your property's flood risk. I would highly recommend checking this out if you have flood concerns. They also provide a resource where you can learn what to do before, during and after a flood that is extremely helpful: https://www.ready.gov/floods.
As always folks, you can call us anytime! Even if you're floating in your kayak where my kids normally like to swing on the playset, we'll still take your call. We are here to protect what's important. Let's discuss your coverage!