Are you looking to save money when shopping for flood insurance in Georgia? One of the best ways is to check with different policy providers to get an idea of the rates. In this article, we cover the six (6) most important factors to consider to help reduce your Georgia flood insurance rates.
Do You Need Flood Insurance in Georgia?
Flood insurance is an add-on insurance policy bought alongside a homeowner’s policy. The policy covers your home and its contents when exposed to flooding.
But do you need flood insurance in Georgia? According to Georgia Flood Insurance, buying coverage is not a must. However, you need to purchase Georgia flood insurance if you want to keep your home safe when it’s flooded.
According to the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency (GEMA), Georgia is exposed to a wide range of natural disasters. Flooding is one such. According to the publication, the timeline of flooding dates back to 1998, when a severe storm that resulted in flooding affected up to 119 counties in Georgia.
The last reported flooding incident in Georgia was in September of 2009 when the state witnessed continuous rainfall that affected 23 counties, damaged up to 20,000 structures, and caused up to 10 deaths.
What Flood Zones Require Flood Insurance in Georgia?
Also, you need to purchase flood insurance in Georgia if you live in either the low-flood risk or high-risk areas. These areas are marked as Zones A, AE, AH, AO, A99, AR, V, or VE. Others are Zones B, C, and X.
How to Save Cost of Flood Insurance in Georgia
If you are looking to get the cheapest flood insurance in Georgia, here are some tips to guide you.
1. Elevate Your Appliances
Flood insurance typically covers the structure of the home and its contents, such as the appliance. A good way to cut down on the cost of flood insurance in Georgia is to elevate your appliances.
Not sure what this means? It simply means that you should place or move your home appliances to a raised platform.
A good rule of thumb is to move the appliances to the upper part of your home if you have some space to spare there.
Otherwise, consider buying raised platforms to hold your appliances, ranging from television sets to home theatres.
The recommended elevation is three feet but if you can get something higher, it is better.
2. Take FEMA’s Recommendations Seriously
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) plays a critical role in keeping the United States safe from natural disasters, including flooding.
Your best strategy to save costs on flooding coverage is to follow FEMA’s recommendations. This includes being intentional about where you live.
For example, the flood insurance for AE Zone can be higher, because it is one of the high-risk areas. So, if you are looking to save costs, consider living in Zones B, C, D, or X. These are the moderate or low-risk flood areas and are not always subject to buying flood insurance coverage.
3. Install Preventive Features to Dry-Proof Your Home
No matter where you live, the risks of flooding can also be lurking around the corner. That is why you must take preventive measures, such as installing systems to prevent flooding.
Installing a dry-proof system is a good way to start. The system prevents your home from getting flooded. A drainage system is an example of such a system and it helps to divert the flow of water in your home when flooded.
You may also want to install a barrier or a sealant. Either of the two can help prevent excessive water from flowing into your home.
4. Compare Your Options Beforehand
There are two types of flood insurance policies for Georgian residents. These are the private and public flood insurance policies.
The public flood insurance policy is offered by the National Flood Insurance Program (NIFP). The NIFP is the body responsible for issuing and regulating flood insurance policies in the United States.
Therefore, compare your options between private and public flood insurance policies. For emphasis, here is a detailed breakdown of how each of the policies works.
The public flood insurance policy is offered by the National Flood Insurance Program (NIFP) through FEMA. Typically, it offers the policyholders up to $100,000 coverage on personal properties and $250,000 coverage for damages to the building property.
On the other hand, the private flood insurance policy is bought through independent insurance companies. Your home insurance company may also be selling the policy.
The cost difference between the two favors the public flood insurance policy because it is cheaper. Homeowners need to live in one of the 21,000 participating communities to qualify for the coverage.
The private flood insurance policy can be expensive, especially when your mortgage lender doesn’t accept it.
5. Pay a Higher Deductible to Lower Your Premiums
Deductibles are the amount of money you pay upfront to the insurance company before the company would start processing a claim when it is time.
Rather than pay a low deductible, consider paying higher. This means you will pay more money upfront out of your pocket before the insurer will pay you when a claim is made.
However, have in mind that paying a higher premium may not always work in your favor, especially when you don’t have some money saved on the side.
So, consider setting aside some additional funds that can be used to fix some damages in your home even before you get your claim approved.
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6. Choose only one Coverage
Your flood insurance in Georgia only covers the building and its contents. Consider choosing one of the two. Going for contents-only flood insurance means that you will only make a claim when your personal properties are damaged by flood.
How Much Does Flood Insurance Cost in Georgia?
The average cost of flood insurance in Georgia is $700. The cost depends on a wide range of factors, including the design of the home, your location, and the deductible paid.
How Do I Get Flood Insurance in Georgia?
You can purchase your flood insurance in Georgia through FEMA or any of the independent insurance agents.
What are the Best Flood Insurance Companies in Georgia?
The list of top flood insurance companies in Georgia includes Allstate Insurance, Hartford Fire Insurance Co., Travelers Insurance, and Omaha Property and Casualty Insurance Co.
Flood insurance is not mandatory in Georgia, but you need it if you live in a flood-prone area. The policy helps you offset some bills, such as the cost of repairing the home and replacing items damaged by the flood.