National Preparedness Month is a time set aside each September to promote family and community disaster and emergency planning. An important step toward being prepared includes having proper insurance coverage. FEMA and its National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) encourage home inspectors to talk with clients about protecting their homes from flood damage by purchasing a flood insurance policy.
No home is completely safe from potential flooding. Just one inch of water in an average-sized home can cause more than $25,000 in damage. According to National Flood Services (NFS), 62% of homeowners say they’re prepared for a flood, but only 12% have flood insurance. Without flood insurance, most residents have to pay out of pocket or take out loans to repair their homes and replace damaged items.
Most homeowners insurance policies do not cover flooding, so buying flood insurance is an important step a homeowner can take to protect their largest investment before a severe weather event. It typically takes 30 days for a flood insurance policy to go into effect—don’t wait until a disaster strikes.
Just one inch of water in an average-sized home can cause more than $25,000 in damage.
Share these actions to take in advance of a severe weather event with your clients to give them peace of mind and, in the event of an emergency, ensure they can start the recovery process without delay.
- Protect important documents (such as birth certificates, passports, etc.) by keeping them in a safe, dry place. The Emergency Financial First Aid Kit can help your clients get started.
- Reduce the risk of damage from flooding by elevating critical utilities such as electrical panels, switches, sockets, wiring, appliances and heating systems.
- Clear debris from gutters and downspouts, make sure basements are waterproofed and ensure your sump pump is working.
Utilize the following resources for you and your clients to learn more:
- FloodSmart.gov provides additional insights into the benefits of flood insurance and what clients can do to protect themselves from flood damage.
- The Cost of Flooding tool illustrates the financial impact a flood can have on a property.
- More financial preparedness tools and resources are available at www.ready.gov/financial-preparedness and on the AFCPE Financial Preparedness Resource page.