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Flood Preparation

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Flood Preparation

Flooding is the most common natural disaster in the United States and can happen anywhere at any time.  It may happen with only a few inches of water, or it may cover a house to the rooftop. While it can happen without notice, there are some areas that are more prone to flooding.  The physical damage caused by flooding depends on the speed and level of the water, the duration, terrain, and environment.  It can cause fatalities and serious injuries, wreck transportation routes, cause power outages may be disrupted, contaminate drinking water, and collapse homes and buildings. Even a few inches can cause thous ands of dollars in damage.

There are steps you can take to prepare for flooding and to minimize your losses.

 

Safeguard your possessions and start by creating a personal flood file in a waterproof deposit box or container. Be sure to include:

A copy of your insurance policies

A household inventory for insurance purposes

Copies of all important documents, including finance records or receipts of major purchases

 

Prepare your house by making sure you always have battery operated back-up to all electronic items, keep your home and gutter clear of debris, raise all electrical components, move all valuables to a safe place.

 

Most importantly, you want to develop a family emergency plan.  Always create a kit to include water, canned food, first aid, blankets, a radio, and a flashlight. Be aware of all emergency contact numbers, plan an evacuation route, and be sure to have a plan for your pets as well.

While you are at it- -update that flood insurance policy!

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Florida Flood Insurance: How Residents Can Obtain and Benefit from It

Florida Flood Insurance: How Residents Can Obtain and Benefit from It

Flooding is a tragic event that damages countless homes and can cause injuries to hundreds of people each year. What many individuals do not know is that flooding can occur just about anywhere in the United States. Excess rain and broken drainage systems are just a few of the many causes of flooding all across the country. Despite the fact that flooding can occur anywhere in the United States, there are some areas that are more prone to flooding than others.

Each year, a large number of individuals move into the state of Florida. Due to its warm temperatures and beautiful weather, Florida has not only become a vacation hotspot. Florida has also become a popular place to live. Despite the fact that Florida is almost always beautiful, it does have its fair share of bad weather. When this bad weather comes it is often in the form of a hurricane.

Hurricane can bring high winds, tornadoes, thunderstorms, and large amounts of rainfall. When it comes to a hurricane it has been said that flooding is a large concern in Florida. Many individuals are unable to pay out-of-pocket to repair their flood damaged homes. That is why a large number of Florida residents obtain flood insurance coverage.

Insurance anywhere in the United States is important, but Florida flood insurance could be on the most important. Every summer Florida is at risk for multiple hurricanes, excess rainfall, and flooding. That is why it is important that all residents obtain Florida flood insurance.

As with car insurance, homeowner’s insurance, and life insurance, there are options when it comes to selecting a coverage plan. A large number of individuals mistakenly believe that all flood insurance coverage is the same. The cost of Florida flood insurance is likely to vary. The National Flood Insurance Program, which offers affordable flood insurance to all Americans, takes a number of factors into consideration when deciding on coverage plans.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has developed Flood Rate Maps. These maps are used by the National Flood Insurance Program to determine the risk associated with providing flood insurance to a specific household. In addition to the Florida Flood Insurance Rate Maps, the National Flood Insurance Program may also take into consideration what Florida has done to prevent or limit the amount of flooding that occurs in their area.

Florida flood insurance that is backed by the National Flood Insurance Program and the Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is sold directly through the program or through a licensed agent. Purchasing Florida flood insurance from a licensed agent may save Florida residents additional money. Due to state laws on rebates, flood insurance agents are able to offer insurance coverage for a discounted price. In fact, AmeriFlood is currently offered a 12% upfront rebate discount on all plans.

Florida flood insurance is a must have for all state residents. When the next hurricane makes l andfall, do not be unprotected. You are encouraged to contact a flood insurance agent today to obtain a free flood insurance quote.

FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map: What Is and Where You Can Find One

FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map: What Is and Where You Can Find One

Flooding is a disastrous event that can occur in a wide number of locations. Despite the fact that flooding can occur just about anywhere in the United States, there are some areas that are more prone to flooding than others. It is often hard for individuals, especially those who are new to the area, to tell if they are living in an area that is prone to flooding. That is one of the many reasons why FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps were developed.

FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps are a collection of maps that detail the likelihood of flooding occurring in a particular area. In addition to keeping the public aware of flooding risks, the FEMA Flood Insurance Rate maps are also used to assist the National Flood Insurance Program in offering affordable flood insurance to Americans living in high-risk flood zones.

FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps are a valuable source of information to homeowners, business owners, construction workers, city officials, and others. While the maps are beneficial, there are many individuals who are unaware that there may be a FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map for their area. If you are looking to purchase a home or a business in an area that you are unfamiliar with or you just want to educate yourself on flooding risks, you have a number of ways gain access to your local FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map.

The most common way to obtain access to your local FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map is to visit the FEMA’s online website. Once at FEMA’s website site you should be able to easily search for your local FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map. If you are only interested in quickly viewing a FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map you can do so for free online. If you are interested in having your own printed FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map then you may have to purchase one.

In addition to obtaining a local FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), you may also be able to view one by speaking to local government officials. Many cities, towns, and state offices have a FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map on h and. You may not be able to take the map outside of their offices, but you may be able to quickly examine it.

Many individuals prefer to look at a FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map, but sometimes hearing the information on those maps is just as good. If you are unable to find a free FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map, you can contact a local or national flood insurance agent for more information. These maps are taken into consideration when flood insurance is offered; therefore, most flood insurance agents would have access to multiple FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps.

Many individuals who are searching for a FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map are doing so because they are interested in obtaining flood insurance. If you contact a flood insurance agent, you may be able to determine your flooding risk and obtain flood insurance coverage all at the same time. In addition to providing valuable flood insurance information, a small number of agents are also able to offer National Flood Insurance Program coverage for a discounted price. That discount can be as high as 12%.

Flood/water damage

Flood/water damage

Severe weather, flooding, and interior water leaks each pose their own risks. Underst anding the different ways water damage can occur helps you take the right steps to protect your property, which includes purchasing the right insurance coverage.

Underst anding causes of water damage.

While fire may be a common concern among homeowners, Travelers claim data suggests that homes could be as much as 10 times more likely to be damaged by water than by fire.

  • More

    Water damage to property can come from many sources with weather-related moisture or flooding being one significant source: leaking roofs, blocked gutters and downspouts leading to foundation and siding damage, ice dams; flooding from heavy rains, flash floods, dam and levee failures, snowmelt and spring thaws, tidal storm surges and mudflows. New construction development of buildings, roads or bridges can often alter the potential and flow of floods. Being located within a flood zone can put individuals at risk, but being outside an established zone does not mean homeowners are safe: flooding is always a possibility due to causes such as heavy rains, snowmelt and spring thaws.

    Water damage also can come from non-weather related sources within the home, including leaky baseboard heating, plugged air conditioning unit condensation drains, furnaces/boilers, water heaters, washing machines, and leaky plumbing. Homeowners may also have wet basements resulting from water entering through cracks in foundations, improper l andscape grading, downspouts placed too close to the foundation or from seepage through floor drains and sewer pipes, among other reasons.

    In all cases, water can cause major damage to your property, valuables and equipment. In severe damage, such as from flooding, it may mean the need to rebuild or move to another location.

Protect your property through prepare and prevent measures.

In addition to purchasing the right insurance coverage, no matter the source of damage-causing water (weather-related or not) there are a number of things you can do to help minimize or prevent water damage to your property.

Protect your property with the right flood insurance.

The average cost for homeowner flood loss is $48,000, according to the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). While floods can cause major destruction, the damage caused by floods is not covered by st andard homeowners insurance policies. However, flood insurance is offered by the NFIP and available through Travelers.

  • More

    A flood insurance policy provides specialized coverage to help you protect your home and condo from rising waters. Costs vary depending on how much insurance is purchased, what it covers, and the property’s flood risk. In general, flood policies can provide coverage for your home’s structure, furnace, water heater, furniture, appliances, clothing, rugs (with certain limitations for basement areas) and certain expenses you incur to protect your home from imminent flood damage and clean up costs. Generally, there is a 30-day waiting period from date of purchase before your policy goes into effect. That means now is the best time to buy flood insurance.

    If you have any questions regarding homeowners insurance or flood insurance, contact your agent or company representative.

Prepare & Prevent: Weather-related sources of floodwater damage

Before

  • Know your flood zone risk. Evaluate your flood risk.
  • Have your furnace, water heater and other permanent equipment elevated above the expected flood levels of your area.
  • Inspect sump pumps and drains regularly to ensure proper operation.
  • If you own a generator, have a licensed electrician provide a transfer switch to your sump pump so you can operate it in the event of flooding.
  • To help prevent sewage backup, have a licensed plumber install an interior or exterior backflow valve.
  • Keep s andbags on h and to help divert unusually high water away from your foundation.
  • In snowy climates, flag drains to avoid plowing snow on top of them.
  • Learn the flood alert signals of your community.
  • Collect emergency building materials if you live in a frequently flooded area. These include plywood, plastic sheeting, lumber, nails, shovels and s andbags.
  • Plan and practice an evacuation route. Designate a place for family members to meet in the event they become separated.
  • Review with all family members how to shut off utilities in an emergency.
  • Plan a kit with important documents, including insurance documents, medications and critical items in the event you need to leave your home.

During

  • Listen to a battery-operated radio or television for the latest storm information. If advised to evacuate, shut off all utilities and evacuate immediately.
  • Move to high ground, avoid rising waters and do not walk or drive through any floodwaters.
  • Stay away from downed power lines and electrical wires.

After

  • Listen to the radio and do not return home until authorities indicate it is safe to do so.
  • Be watchful of snakes that may have found their way into your home.
  • Throw away all food that has come in contact with floodwaters.
  • Remove st anding water as quickly as possible, including from your basement. If your basement is flooded, pump out the water gradually. Remove about 1/3 per day to avoid structural damage.
  • Properly dry or remove soaked carpets, padding and upholstery within 24-48 hours after a flood to prevent mold growth. Discard anything that cannot be properly dried.
  • Wash and disinfect all areas that have been flooded. This includes walls, floors, closets, shelves, as well as heating and air-conditioning systems.
  • Do not energize electrical or electronic equipment that may have suffered water damage without first having a qualified electrician inspect and/or test it.
  • Promptly report the loss to Travelers using the toll-free claim reporting number.

More on tips for wet basements.
Floodsmart Tips

Prepare & Prevent: Weather-related sources of water damage

You can minimize or help prevent water damage from sources from within the home through home maintenance steps, including:

  • Keep drains, gutters and downspouts clear of leaves and other debris.
  • Maintain your roof to prevent water from seeping into your home.
  • Move downspouts minimally three feet away from the base of your home.
  • Inspect and repair foundation wall cracks.
  • Grade your l andscape away from your building so water is directed away from the basement.

Prepare & Prevent: Non-weather, interior sources of water damage

You can minimize or help prevent water damage from sources from within the home through home maintenance steps, including:

  • Inspect washing machine hoses annually and replace every three–five years–or immediately, if there are any signs of cracking or bulging.
  • Inspect plumbing around water heaters, showers, tubs, toilets, sinks, and dishwashers annually and repair if there are any signs of leaks or corrosion. When possible, install water heaters in an area with floor drains to minimize damage if leaks should occur.
  • Inspect refrigerator icemaker connections, usually located behind the refrigerator, annually and replace hoses if they appear cracked or corroded.
  • Check air conditioning drain lines yearly and clean if clogged.

The storm is over – now what do you do?

 

 

The storm is over –
now what do you do?

After it is confirmed by authorities that the storm has passed and it is safe to go outdoors, you can begin to assess any potential damage. If you have property damage, you should report your claim as soon as possible. The more information you can provide when you report the loss, the better we can begin our response. However, if you have missing information but have sustained damage, please report your claim in any event.

  1. Stay inside and make sure everyone is safe.

Stay tuned to the radio or television until an official “all clear” is given (if you were evacuated, return home only after authorities advise it is safe to do so.)

  1. Avoid downed power lines.

Never touch anything in contact with power lines, including water or water puddles that may be near the downed power lines.

  1. Protect property from further damage.

Board up broken windows to protect against v andalism or additional weather damage. Arrange for reasonable temporary repairs.

  1. Keep accurate expense records.

Save bills and materials receipts from your temporary repairs. (Do not make permanent repairs until the insurance adjuster has reviewed the damage.) Also, keep accurate records of other expenses incurred.

  1. Separate and inventory the damaged property.

Write a list of any damaged contents. Include the item description, name of the manufacturer, the br and name, age, the place and date of purchase, if known. Use any photographs, videotapes or personal property inventories you may already have to help.

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