Understanding flood coverage for home, automobiles before disaster strikes

COLUMBUS, Ga — Rainfall literally flooded the Valley earlier this week. Nearly seven inches of rain fell between Monday and Tuesday.  All that rain falling so fast resulted in flash flooding, too.  But did you know the common homeowner’s policy doesn’t cover flooding damage?

It’s a homeowner’s horror story: flooding. The thought of it, the images, stir so many emotions.  But while we all hope it never happens, if it were to happen to your home, do you know if you’re covered?

“Well, a lot of people have the misconceptions that flood is included in their homeowner’s policy, and it’s not,” says State Farm Agent Connie Wilkes of Columbus.

Connie Wilkes with State Farm Insurance in Columbus says homeowners who purchase homes in flood zones are usually required by their mortgage companies to purchase flood insurance.  But unfortunately, rushing water knows no boundaries.

“But 25% of the flood claims come outside of the flood plain,” says Wilkes.

With that in mind, how can a homeowner decide if a flood policy is a worthwhile investment?

“So, if you’re located close to a waterway or viaduct, I think it’s important to at least look at it,” Wilkes says.

It’s also important that you know in the event of a flood, only a comprehensive automobile policy will cover water damage to your car.

“Comprehensive is typically the things you can’t control, so hail damage, flood, vandalism, theft, those kinds of things. And flood would fall into your auto policy, if you had a comprehensive coverage,” says Wilkes.

If you have any questions about your home or auto policies when it comes to flooding, it’s always best to talk to your agent now, before you need to cash in due to disaster.

A good source to find out about  flooding  zones is your local city/county engineers.  They usually have maps that clearly define flood areas.

Also, you might be interested to know insurance companies write their flood policies through the National Flood Insurance Program through the federal government.

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