Community First Agency LLC Blog
Whenever you hear the word flood it can be scary especially if you own a business in Augusta Georgia. The flood of 1990 showed us that everything can be lost in an instant. Lets imagine you have an extremely profitable business. What would happen if that business could not operate for several months?
More than likely if you were not properly prepared the business would close and you would lose everything. This is exactly what floods can do to a business if you are not careful. There are two ways to buy flood insurance for your business, the right way and the wrong way.
Lets talk about the wrong way first. You open up your business and the building you are financing requires flood insurance so you buy exactly what the bank requires, which is to cover the loan. Great you have just helped the bank protect themselves but not yourself. So now if a flood occurs there is just enough coverage there to cover the loan amount which more than likely will not bring the building back to working order. So now you have a building you can not use in the mean time and generate revenue for your company. Also if you have rented this building out to other businesses you may have caused a hardship on there business which could expose you legally.
Now lets talk about the right way to buy flood insurance for your business in Augusta Georgia. First of all when it comes to the building we need to calculate the replacement cost to rebuild it, this way we can make sure it is covered for that amount. Next we need to look at the possibility of loss of business income. A good number to go off here is a six month reserve this way your business can continue operating when repairs are being made. This is probably the number one coverage that business owners leave off their flood insurance. The next area is to look at business property, if the things you use to operate your business each day are destroyed then you won't be able to operate. So when buying flood insurance take inventory of your business property to make sure everything is listed.
If you have rented out your building to other businesses then it is probably a good idea to have them sign a waiver stating business property flood insurance has been offered, this is a coverage that is usually just a couple hundred dollars and highly recommended. There are many others areas that business owners need to look at when purchasing flood insurance. We recommend reaching out to a commercial flood insurance expert like Community First Agency in Augusta at (770) 464-5024 to answer the many questions business owners have about flood coverage.
Alabama is a gorgeous state that has seen some major damage from natural disasters in the past. One of the major hidden risks is flooding.
Most people think the highest risk for flooding is in Mobile and Baldwin counties because of the coastal risk. While there is a great threat here, it is not the area that could be the most exposed.
Alabama has multiple rivers that run through it that can create some spectacular views and some very dangerous situations. Some of these rivers include the Tennessee River in the Huntsville, Madison, and Decatur area. Another area goes from NorthEast to SouthEast Alabama with the Coosa River. This river impacts areas like Gadsden, Pell City, and Rainbow City Alabama. Another area is the Black Warrior river that impacts cities like Tuscaloosa Alabama.
While these rivers pose some threat its the runoff to the smaller creeks during rainstorms that can cause the most danger. Many people say they don't understand why their home is in a high risk flood zone. Many times its the dried up creek next to their house that causes major concerns during heavy rain. Its getting these quick amounts of rain in a short amount of time that can cause the most damage. Vestavia Hills Alabama has had a major problem with this historically that has caused damage to multiple businesses and residences.
Many people say do I really need flood insurance and the answer is yes especially in the areas that get lots of rain during the spring months. These are also some the cheapest areas for flood insurance. To understand what your flood insurance options are in Alabama we recommend contacting a flood insurance specialist like Community First Agency at (205) 451 4294
Traditionally flooding in coastal areas has caused widespread deaths and damage. Many times in the after math people do not know where to turn for assistance when it comes to skyrocketing flood insurance premiums.
First of all flood insurance premiums are based off of maps that FEMA approves. These maps are generally updated every few years and often after recent flooding events. In recent years certain parts of coastal Georgia have experience major flooding like they never have before. Because of where the coast of Georgia is located it has been fortunate enough in the past to have limited damage from hurricanes.
However the last few years the Georgia coast has not been as lucky and has suffered major flood damage in back to back years. As a result people are not sure where to turn when it comes to lowering their flood premiums or putting flood insurance in place for the first time.
Community First Agency specializes in helping people understand flood insurance in areas like Saint Simons, Brunswick, Tybee Island, and Savannah Georgia. Over the last year there have been many changes to the flood maps in these areas. As a result many people are able to cut their premiums in half. So it is very important to shop your flood insurance each year to see if your map has been updated. You can click here to see if your map has been updated. You can also contact a flood insurance specialist like Chris Greene with Community First Agency by clicking here or calling 770-464-5024.
Floods can be scary and protecting yourself from their damage can be even scarier. Understand your flood insurance options in the Augusta area is crucial to make sure you have right coverage. The Savannah river and the many creeks in the area cause major concern for flooding in Columbia and Richmond counties.
When looking at the risk of flooding, one thing that is a major factor is the history of flooding in an area. The Augusta area had major flooding in the early 90's. As a result many areas that were in low risk areas where flooded that had never had any issues before. So in looking at your flood insurance coverages its important to work with an expert that not only understands the history of flooding in area, the risk of flooding in different zones, but also the exact kind of coverages that need to be listed on a policy.
In looking at understanding all this information you need to know you have more options than just the National Flood Insurance program's rating. One option is if your home was built after the mid 1980's you maybe able to have your home grandfathered to a better zone giving you a better rating. You may have access to the private flood insurance market that can be up to 50% less than the National Flood Insurance Program. We recommend working with someone that has a background in hazard mitigation or flood mitigation. One particular expert is Community First Agency in Augusta, Ga. They specialize in teaching homeowners and business owners what their flood insurance options are.
Flooding can be devastating and in order to protect ourselves we have to understand it. Flooding can occur for many reasons and many of these reasons can be predictable. Some of these reasons maybe large amounts of rain from a hurricane. Some of the other reasons that many people don't think about are thunderstorms that quickly pop up and management of drainage systems.
In looking at recent flooding in areas like Vestavia and Birmingham Al most damage occurred for these exact two reasons. A large amount of rain fell in a short amount of time as a result of an afternoon thunderstorm. The next thing that caused this flooding was the mismanagement of the drainage system. Especially during late fall leaves can fall very quickly and if they are not removed they can clog drainage systems. So when these large amount of rain falls it has nowhere to go. This is why one of the best preventive steps to preventing flood is managing drainage systems.
This also applies to our homes by simply monitoring our gutters and run off water we can prevent a lot of damage that would occur from flooding. If you want to learn about other preventive measures or your options on flood insurance then contact Community First Agency in Birmingham Al.
Generally most people are familiar with flood insurance if you live on the coast. However once you get outside this area the education and awareness for flood insurance drastically drops. So we are briefly going to discuss the main flood zones outside this area and what your options are.
The first thing we want to do is look at the three main flood zones. We have flood zone AE, A, and X. These zones are based on the probability of a flood occurring. The first zone AE is a 100 year flood zone this means these areas have a 1% chance of flooding every year. The next zone A is a 500 year flood zone which means it has a 0.2% chance of flooding each year. The last zone is a flood zone X which is a minimal risk area.
Now that we know the types of zones we want to look at the options for flood insurance. The first option that most people are aware of is the National Flood Insurance Program also known as NFIP. This program is managed by the federal government and is the most popular program. However the reason it is the most popular is most people are not aware of the other options. Once other option is going through private company flood insurance. This option can be up to 70% less because they can pick and choose the risks they take. The next option is getting the property placed in a different zone based on what is on the elevation certificate. One of the last options is looking at the year the home was built and when the first flood map is to see if it is possible to get it grandfathered to the original zone.
Sometimes understanding all of this can be overwhelming. That's why we recommend contacting an independent insurance agent that holds a degree in flood mitigation. You can contact Community First Agency in Birmingham, Atlanta, Augusta, and Nashville at (205) 451-4294.
Here are some of the most common areas when someone would need an umbrella policy.
Someone gets injured on your property
You are held at fault in an auto accident
You are held responsible for someone getting injured.
A home owners insurance policy has many different coverages. The basic coverages to look for are the dwelling coverage, the other structures coverage, the personal property coverage, the loss of use coverage, the liability coverage, and the medical payments coverage.
The area that we are going to look at is the liability and medical payments coverage. These two coverages work together to give the home owner coverage if someone was to get hurt on their property. The liability portion covers bigger things like dog bites, and major injuries. Medical payments covers smaller things like someone trips and hurts their knees. A good way to tell the difference is liability usually includes injuries that involve hospitals and courts.
Now that we understand this coverage we can talk about a few things that are generally not covered. If someone is injured on your property while performing work for you they usually are not covered. Another area where coverage usually does not extend is if a family member is hurt on the property.
This particular coverage on the home insurance policy is probably the least talked about coverage, the most needed coverage, and the most cost effective coverage. The amount of coverage usually ranges from $100,000, $300,000, $500,000, and $1,000,000. The cost averages about $50 a year difference between the lowest coverage and the highest coverage. At Community First Agency we usually do not recommend anything below $500,000.
So the next time you review your insurance contact Community First Agency in Birmingham, AL at (205) 451-4294 for a better understanding of what is covered.