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Flood Insurance

Having caused $20 billion in claims over the past 10 years, floods are the costliest natural disaster in the US. As a flood insurance leader with advanced technologies and responsive service, we can help.

Flooding wreaks havoc on tens of thousands of businesses and homes every year.

Having flood insurance is imperative when this unexpected and unfortunate event occurs — commercial business and real estate owners, as well as property managers, renters, and homeowners, should have a thorough understanding of available flood insurance options.

Marsh’s Flood Solutions team has decades of experience in flood insurance placement and risk management. Our Flood Service Center specialists offer advice on the three key flood insurance types — primary, wrap, and excess — as well as which would be best to meet your requirements.

Through Torrent Technologies, Inc., we also provide Write Your Own (WYO) insurers and their agents with cloud-based technology solutions, back-office services, and innovative tools for working with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Curated private flood insurance products are also fully integrated into this platform to help make it easier for WYO insurers and their agents to sell flood insurance.

With this unique combination of deep expertise, diverse product choice, and advanced technology, we can offer you a robust, end-to-end solution to ensure you gain proper advice, adequate flood coverage, and swift claims settlement.

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Flood insurance plans are intended to be a supplementary policy to cover property, including homes and buildings, in the event of a flood. In many cases, standard property insurance will not protect against flood damage. Plans may vary somewhat in their coverage, based on the issuing broker and the region of the world in which the insured’s property is located.

However, most typically cover flooding damages to:

  • The foundation of the home or commercial building
  • Electrical and plumbing systems
  • Appliances
  • Flooring
  • Personal property, such as furniture, clothing, electronics, and valuables

Depending on your needs and availability, you might also consider additional coverage for business interruption and extra expense.

According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), a flood is defined as “waters covering at least two acres or affecting two properties.” It is important to keep in mind that different regions of the world may be impacted by floods differently, and insurance policies may be written to reflect that. Floods, per the III, may be caused by such things as heavy or prolonged rain, a coastal storm surge, a levee dam failure, rapid snowmelt, ice jams, and more.

Flood insurance can generally be broken down into three separate categories of needs: homeowners, business owners, and renters.

  • Homeowners’ flood insurance covers the foundation, structure, fixtures, and contents of a home, up to a certain amount. It is usually purchased separately from general homeowners’ insurance.
  • Commercial flood insurance has a higher payout limit, as it is intended to provide reimbursement for larger buildings and possibly expensive equipment.
  • Renters’ insurance varies in its coverage of flood losses, focusing mainly on belongings, because a renter does not own the house or building damaged by the flood.

A great deal of research and effort has been channeled into the development of technology to manage flood risk around the world.

Many cultures in flood-prone regions, or where flooding is seen as a normal annual phenomenon, long ago developed strategies for flood proofing or otherwise protecting their homes and belongings. These strategies are low-tech and work to varying degrees.

In recent years, the world has seen increased interest in developing early flood warning systems and using technology to add resiliency to critical structures, such as dams, levees, and bridges. A specific example of a global flood warning technology is the utilization of text message alerts to warn citizens of impending flood risk, giving them time to protect themselves and their belongings to the best of their ability.

Managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the National Flood Insurance Program provides flood insurance to homeowners, renters, and businesses. This coverage allows individuals to recover from flood damage faster, ensuring homes and businesses in the community can thrive. The NFIP works both individually and through a network of approximately 55 different Write Your Own (WYO) companies to support the sales, marketing, and distribution of flood insurance.

Flood insurance provides coverage over the physical losses caused by the immediate impact of flooding. In general, a flood insurance policy will cover the following:

  • The foundation of the home or commercial building
  • Electrical and plumbing systems
  • Appliances
  • Flooring
  • Personal property, such as furniture, clothing, electronics, and valuables

Typically, a flood insurance policy will not cover the following:

  • Stock certificates, bonds, and cash
  • Plants and trees
  • Wells and septic systems
  • Walkways, decks, patios, and fences
  • Pools and hot tubs
  • Storm shelters
  • Temporary housing (but may be available as optional coverage)
  • Basement contents (limited, but may be available as optional coverage)
  • Cars

One of our specialists can offer tailored advice on the three key flood insurance types to determine which coverage option is best for you.

Assessing your risk for flood damage is the easiest way to keep the safety of your business at top of mind. Ask yourself the following questions to determine your risk for flood damage:

  • Is my business located in or near a known flood zone or an area that has experienced flooding?
  • Where is my equipment and inventory located, and will it be impacted if a flood occurs?
  • Will my employees be able to reach the office or warehouse in the event of hazardous weather?

Having an emergency response plan in the event of a flood event is critical to reducing your risk of damage. Together with a flood insurance policy, it can provide peace of mind and enhance your resilience when flooding occurs.