Despite living in the desert, the physicality of the desert lends to flooding during heavy rains. The compact, hard, sandy ground of the desert doesn’t allow water to soak through like the soil in greener climates. These factors cause flooding and flash floods, creating hazards for homes, vehicles, and even hikers and pedestrians.
Most catastrophic events are excluded from all polices, but there are certain events like earthquake and flood that are covered under specified policies. Flood insurance policies were originally created by the government in 1968 for high-risk areas such as those near oceans and lakes. These insurance programs are created and written by the National Flood Insurance Program, and are managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which we know as FEMA. In general, almost any building that has walls, a roof, and permanently fixed above ground is eligible for flood coverage.
A flood policy can be purchased to insure the dwelling and the contents, or just one of those two. A $1,000 standard deductible applies separately to each building loss and each content loss per-occurrence, but higher deductibles are available. The NFIP polices cover property against all direct loss by or from a flood. It is important to remember that indirect financial loss, or loss of use (displacement from a home or business) is not covered. Property is also covered for 45 days when it is moved above ground or to another place to protect it from flood damage.
As to be expected, insurance companies wanted in on the flood insurance business, so the government has allowed private insurance companies to sell flood insurance through the “Write Your Own Program”. Under this, the government sets rates, eligibility requirements, and coverage limitations for the policies sold. The servicing of the policy, and collection of premiums is done by the private insuring company.
Examples of flood and flood damage:
Regardless of where you live, every community has some flood risk. The Arizona desert’s most significant flood risk comes from flash floods, and sheet flooding. If you own a home or business in a high-risk flood zone and have a federal mortgage, flood insurance is mandatory. Even in moderate or low-risk areas, and even without a federally backed mortgage, just one inch of flood water can cause over $25,000 in home and property damage.