Do I need flood insurance?
Quick Answer: If you don’t live in a flood zone, flood insurance isn’t required. However, it may be a sound investment to help protect your home in the event of flood damage.
When you purchase a home, your lender will verify if the property is in a flood zone. Flood zones are determined by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). If FEMA determines the home is in a flood zone, your lender will require flood insurance to be purchased in addition to homeowner’s insurance. The first year of the flood insurance policy has to be paid in full before closing and must be escrowed for the life of the loan. To check if your home is in a flood zone, click here.
If your lender determines the property is not in a flood zone, flood insurance is not required. However, flooding can happen anywhere. Most homeowner’s insurance policies do not cover flood related damage, even if the policy includes hurricane coverage. Purchasing flood insurance will help cover that gap. Flood insurance can protect both the building and contents of your home from water damage.
If you want to purchase flood insurance but you aren’t in a flood zone, you will pay the insurance company directly each year as the lender will not escrow it in your monthly payment if it’s not required. Flood insurance can be expensive, but if your home is affected by water damage, your insurance claim will not be covered without it.