2010 brought many changes to flood zone maps over several counties in Texas. If your home’s location has been reclassified as a flood zone and you no longer have a mortgage on it then you may not be aware of these changes because you are not required to buy flood insurance. Just because you aren’t required to buy this valuable coverage doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t.
Home vs. Flood Insurance
A home insurance policy protects your home’s structure and contents from many perils such as hurricanes, fires, and theft. It does not protect homes from flooding or storm surges. If a body of water near your home rises as a result of heavy rains, runoff, or storm surge and its waters rise to meet, and infiltrate, your doors and walls, if you aren’t covered by a flood insurance policy you will have no way to recover your damages and no assistance in preventing mold, rebuilding or draining the water.
Benefits and LimitationsA flood insurance policy can be purchased by any home owner whether they reside in a designated flood zone or not. The policy generally covers your building as well as contents and includes coverage for wiring, plumbing and some appliances. Flood insurance also includes other benefits such as cleanup and reimbursement for protective measures like sandbags.
If there is mold damage that could have been prevented, your flood policy may exclude it from coverage. Additionally, damages to outdoor structures are excluded and there is no loss of use benefit, so your temporary accommodations won’t be reimbursed. If the flooding is the result of rain entering your home rather than the overflow of a body of water then your home insurance policy may cover the damages rather than your flood insurance policy.
As with any insurance policy, your flood insurance policy will have limits that outline the maximum benefit it will pay out. If you have valuable antiques or jewelry in the home and their value exceeds your policy’s limits, you will need additional coverage or endorsements to fully protect them.
You can find out of your Texas home is now in a flood zone by visiting FloodSmart.gov. We are happy to look at your area and your current home insurance protection to help you create an insurance plan that protects your home from all of the perils it faces. Call us today to discuss your options at (713) 349-0400.