What if your house flooded? Here in Sacramento, we have designated flood areas such as Natomas and a little further out, Plumas Lake and of course, areas around the Orville Damn. But sometimes, the rain comes down fast and furious and the ground is already waterlogged, creeks rise and the drains get clogged with leaves. You don’t have to be in a designated flood zone to need insurance. This past winter, we experienced record levels of rain though nothing near the devastation that Hurricane Harvey wrought on Texas.
While some people have heard of the National Flood Insurance Program, not everyone is aware that private flood insurance is also available. The benefits of going through a private insurer, says Tim Wheeler, a Farmer’s Insurance Agent in Marysville, is that you’ll get paid faster than what you can get from the government, it’s less expensive, and you can get more coverage. The federal program is mired in debt…not a big surprise there, but Hurricanes like Katrina, Rita, and Superstorm Sandy drowned the federal program in almost $25 billion in debt. You can only imagine how Harvey will add further to that.
Tim told me that you can be covered with private insurance for less than $500/year and sometimes much less. Consider a policy for just $100,000 which should be enough to cover repairs for dry wall, electrical wiring, flooring, mold remediation, studs, and siding. Private insurers usually only have a 15 day waiting policy versus the 30 days that the federal program requires. It doesn’t take much water to cause costly damage inside a home.
Another thing that private insurers cover that the federal policy doesn’t, is living expenses while you are displaced. That can be a significant issue. Hurricanes don’t hit California but Sacramento can be prone to flooding. Even though it might be a stretch to think of a soggy winter like last year when we’re being beaten down by the sun this summer, it might be worth it to look into flood insurance. Make sure you shop around because there are multiple insurers out there.
On a side note, I’m very proud to work for Keller Williams Realty. They are a great company in good times and bad and our humanitarian arm, KW Cares, is heading into the hardest hit areas of Houston with large semis of food, clothing, other necessities. I’ve made some contributions and I hope you will think about how you can help too. Know that even the smallest donation can make a difference when you consider that it’s multiplied by the greatest number of people giving. The American Red Cross is always a good start if your place of employment, your church, or organization isn’t organizing an effort to help.
Prayers and love for Texas!