What is a flood?
The definition of 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.
FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, conducts studies using historical statistical data, topographical surveys, etc. to produce Flood Zone Maps. The maps just show different degrees of risk in an area. Granted, your property may not lie in a flood zone area, but that does not mean that you will not experience flooding.
Does my homeowner’s insurance cover me in case of a flood?
Well, yes & no! Confused yet?
Let’s start with this. Most homeowner’s policies specifically exclude water that overflows from sumps, sump pumps, or related equipment or water that backs-up through sewers or drains. When a flood occurs, the sewer lines can become inundated and this can possibly cause a water backup into your home.
But I have Water Backup Coverage on my policy!
That is very good that you do have that coverage, but water backup coverage and flood insurance are not the same.
Water backup coverage may not protect your home if the sewer backs up due to a flood. It depends on the circumstances and your policy. If flood water entered the exterior of your home and caused damage, it will need to be determined if water backing up from the sewer was also a factor.
This is not to negate Water Backup Coverage. It is very important. Most homeowners do not realize that they are responsible for the maintenance and repair of the sewer line from the street to their house. A cracked or deteriorated line or one filled with tree roots can allow groundwater to seep into the system, contributing to the possible sewer backup problems.
Here’s a simple way to think of it. Your homeowner’s insurance covers water falling from the sky. Once water touches the ground and enters your home, it’s a flood, and only flood insurance will pay for the damage.
Yes, insurance can be a little confusing at times. That’s why you should speak with a qualified agent to help unravel the convoluted aspects of your insurance coverage and help you to better understand your potential liabilities. With that you can both work to insure the financial security of you and your family.
Marc It Insured!