Will My Renters Insurance Policy Cover Flood Damage?

The standard renters insurance typically excludes flood damage caused by weather events. For instance, if, due to heavy rains, a nearby river bursts its banks, flooding your rented property and damaging your possessions, renters insurance in New York will not cover that. In such a situation, a separate flood insurance coverage would come in handy. Aside from weather-related flood damage, a renters insurance policy will likely cover other cases of water damage in your rented home, except damage caused by sewer backup. Here is more information about this topic.

Instances in Which Renters Insurance Covers Flood Damage

Insurance providers define a flood as any surface water from outside that enters a house through openings above the ground level. Renters insurance does not provide flood damage coverage. However, it does cover loss caused by a covered event. For instance, if heavy rains cause your ceiling to leak and damage your possessions, renters insurance will cover the resulting loss, provided the cause is an insured event.

What Does Flood Insurance for Renters Cover?

Flood insurance basically covers the damage that a flood causes to your belongings in a rented property. Specifically, it covers the costs of repair or replacement of items such as:

  • Furniture, clothes, and electronics
  • Food freezers, including the food stored in them
  • Washers and dryers
  • Carpets, except those that are fixed on an unfinished floor
  • High-value items, up to $2,500
  • Portable home appliances, including microwave ovens, dishwashers, and air conditioners

Take note this policy will not cover sewer backup as well as damage to the structure of your rented property.

Do Tenants Need Flood Insurance?

Some renters, especially those living in low-risk flood zones, don’t see the need to purchase flood insurance. However, data from the Federal Emergency Management Agency FEMA shows that 25% of flood-related insurance claims come from low-to-moderate flood risk areas. Take note that 1-inch of water can cause up to $25,000 worth of damage in your rented home. It is worth noting that flood insurance can come in handy regardless of the size of the risk at hand. Experts recommend buying flood insurance if:

  • You live in a high-risk flood area
  • You want to be considered for federal disaster aid in future
  • You live within an NFIP participating community
  • Your landlord requires you to have flood insurance

Buying Flood Insurance for a Rented Property

There are two major ways of buying flood insurance. Firstly, you can access coverage from the federal government’s National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). However, you have to get your coverage through an NFIP-approved insurance agent. To qualify for this policy, your neighborhood must be a participating member of NFIP. Secondly, you can purchase flood insurance from a private insurance company.

Cost of Flood Insurance

The average cost of flood insurance in the US is $700 per year. This cost can vary depending on factors such as the size of the flood risk in your location, the value of your belongings, and the amount of coverage. However, you can lower flood insurance costs by:

  • Mitigating risks to prevent or alleviate flood damage
  • Getting a community discount if your community has mitigated flood risks
  • Raising your deductible
  • Getting an elevation certificate from NFIP if the first floor of your rented property is elevated

How to Get the Right Renters Insurance Policy

Our team of experienced agents at Premier Risk, LLC has your best interest at heart. We have years of experience to help you find the exact policy that will provide you with the maximum benefits. Call us today and find out everything you need to know to purchase quality renters insurance in NY.