Action 9: Homeowners responsible for buying flood insurance

by: Jason Stoogenke Updated:


MATTHEWS, N.C. - Homeowners affected by floods could dread the price to restore their property.
Matthews resident Maureen Henry's house flooded after heavy rainfall Tuesday. 
The damage was so bad she can't stay there now. 
She was back home Wednesday to figure out where to begin the cleanup. 
She had a contractor look around but she knows that whatever it costs, homeowners insurance won't pay it. 
"I wish I had [flood] insurance. I mean, I knew the creek bed was here,” she said. “(I) never thought it would come anywhere near the house -- never has."
In fact, FEMA "warns homeowners that most homeowners’ insurance policies do not cover floods... Federal disaster assistance cannot be relied on for flood events because most floods are not nationally declared disasters." 
That's where flood insurance comes in.
The federal government runs it, so all insurance agents -- including Allstate's Keith Franklin -- charge about the same. 
There's no use shopping around. 
If you live in a floodplain, expect to pay as much as $600 per year. 
If you don't live in one, it can be $100 to $200. You may still want it.
"You may be in close proximity to a creek or something like that and you say, 'Just in case I think I ought to have it.' And then it's on you. The onus is on you.  The onus is on the insured to get it themselves," Franklin said.
It takes 30 days for a flood insurance policy to go into effect.
State Farm told Action 9, "If you carry comprehensive coverage on your vehicle policy, then damage resulting from wind, hail, flood or earthquake generally will be covered (subject to your deductible). We recommend against driving vehicles damaged by floodwater until they have been inspected by a qualified technician. It is easy to see how floodwater damages a car's upholstery and carpeting, but difficult to see damage to a car's engine, transmission and electrical components."