Floods are the most common and widespread of all natural disasters. If you live in an area where floods occur, you should know the following:
Click here for more information from WA State Emergency Management Division.
***Homeowner's insurance does not cover flood damage. It sure seems like we had quite a few people across the state last year that had flood damage during the November 2006 floods and the December and January wind storms that did not live any where near a river or stream. And, we had a lot of folks suffer flood damage that did live near a stream or river that were uninsured.
Your home has a 26% chance of being damaged by a flood during the course of a 30-year mortgage, compared to a 9% chance of fire. Last year, One-third of all claims paid by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) were for policies in low-risk communities (not near a river/stream). It takes 30 days after purchase for a policy to take effect, so it is important to buy insurance before the floodwaters start to rise. Since we seem to have some of our worst floods in October, now would be a good time to make the purchase. Flood insurance is relatively inexpensive if you are not living in a special flood hazard area. Even though the cost is higher if you do live in a special flood hazard area, it is a lot less expensive than the alternative of paying back the loan you will have to take out to fix your home.
Federal disaster assistance (when it is available and often times it is not) 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, wihich is about $42 a month ($500 a year). If you live in low to moderate risk area and are eligible for the Preferred Risk Policy, your flood insurance premium may be as low as $9 a month ($112 a year), including coverage for your property's contents.
Click here for more information from the NFIP through FEMA.