Birmingham is both literally and figuratively flooded with a lot of problems since the start of the year. One of the biggest culprits is the heavy rainfall that leads to flash flooding across the city and other parts of the state.

We've been talking about how flood insurance helps residents recover from the flood damage caused by these events, but today, we want to focus on the impacts this has on restaurants and other local businesses in Birmingham, Alabama, and how flood insurance helps these business owners bounce back from the damages brought about by the recent flooding in the city.

Birmingham Floods of '22

Just this year, Birmingham has faced a lot of flooding due to snowmelt, heavy precipitation, or a mix of both. This further adds to the data found that the flooding that Alabama's been getting significantly increased in the last 3 to 5 years compared to the last 10 to 15 years.

Last month, Birmingham experienced a couple of devastating floodings after heavy rainfall that came from storms. This caused a lot of major problems like road closures, people getting stranded in their vehicles, and overall increased flood risks. We were able to cover this in our recent blog on the Alabama floods.

This was also impacting local businesses who now have to face unwanted temporary closing because they need to still fix whatever damage these floods brought. This was one of the experiences for the people at Pies and Pints in Downtown Birmingham.

With this unprecedented flooding and the risks that this type of natural disaster can present, you might be wondering why does Alabama keep on flooding? More importantly, as a business owner, you want to know your game plan against flood loss for your investment and source of income.

Commercial Flood Insurance for Birmingham

Flood insurance is vital protection for business owners in Birmingham Alabama. Unfortunately, many business owners are not aware of the flood insurance options that are available to them for commercial insurance coverages or what the risk of flooding is.

This hurts not only your budget for your business but also the earnings you might get. So, here's where flood insurance comes in when it comes to saving you money and avoiding unnecessary losses.

There are a few different flood insurance options available to business owners in Birmingham Alabama.

The first option is a standard National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policy or a private flood insurance policy, both of which cover damages from flooding that occurs inside of your home or business. But how are they different?

The NFIP Way

Federal flood insurance has recently overhauled the services they're providing to home and business owners across the state. This comes in the form of the Risk Rating 2.0 program which changes the overall way of Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) approach to calculating flood insurance premium rates.

One of the biggest things that came out of this new program — which started impacting new business or newly-acquired insurances in October 2021 and now will take effect across renewing policies — is that flood zones no longer matter.

Now, we've talked about why flood zones no longer matter in Birmingham City and Alabama in general in our previous blog, but what Risk Rating 2.0 points out is that flood zones will no longer affect your rates.

This is because you will be rated based on the flood risks that your business is facing. A bit of a hard pill to swallow, but coastal or riverside restaurants in the community will find an increase in their premiums with Risk Rating 2.0. This is generally because one of the risk factors is your business' distance to water, so you might want to prepare for that as well.

A standard National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policy provides coverage for commercial properties of up to $500,000 on building coverage and $100,000 max on contents (the things inside the insured building).

You should keep in mind that it's best to maximize the 80% rule when buying an NFIP policy.

FEMA and the NFIP have a strict 30-day waiting period for each policy to take effect on a property. This is a good-to-know since you want to really be ahead of time if you want to buy federal flood insurance.

Now, what if this doesn't work for you and your business? That's totally understandable considering that a lot of money comes in and goes out when maintaining a business.

You might want to look into the private flood market for your needs especially if you have a big business.

The Private Flood Way

Now, one of the key similarities between the NFIP and private flood insurance is that both can provide you with enough coverage for both the premises of your business and everything inside of it. However, this comes with one important catch: Private Flood doesn't have any coverage limits.

This simply means that you can actually get more than $500,000 in building coverage when buying a private flood policy and the same goes for content coverage. Still, you should best practice the 80% rule when it comes to these coverages.

Private flood also has more flexible coverage terms, this simply means that maybe you don't need $500,000 on building coverage because you're still in the start-up business, then you may choose to have that policy written for the substantial amount you need.

You can also easily get excess flood insurance through what's called loss of use. Click here to read our blog on the loss of use coverage in flood insurance.

Business Is Good

It is important for business owners in Birmingham to have flood insurance and understand how flood insurance claims can impact you. The right policy can help protect your business from costly damages in the event of a flood and also help you easily bounce back.

For more information on flood insurance options for businesses and flooding concerns, click below to go to our Flood Learning Center where we answer your flood insurance questions.

Flood Insurance Guru | Service | Knowledge Base
Chris Greene


Chris Greene

President of The Flood Insurance Guru
M.S. in Emergency Management with a focus in Flood Mitigation

Birmingham Alabama — There seems to be no room to breathe when it comes to flood threats in Alabama as the state faces another week of intense storms starting this afternoon (Tuesday, 03/22).

Being safe from flooding storms out of the state. This might also present some impacts to flood insurance. You may have thought about it, so we'll ask the important question when it comes to this weather event that's rampaging Alabama...

Will this flash flooding in Alabama cause a Flood Map Update?

Second Round of Storms

Last week, we saw a lot of flash flooding going around as a result of heavy rains that blindsided residents in Alabama. This flood event caused a lot of roads to close and get inundated with water in Alabama.

It may seem that this is where it ends for the troublesome weather conditions for commuters and residents however it looks like it was just the beginning as severe weather is reported to move across the Southern Plains.

This second batch will be bringing the same heavy rains and strong winds starting this evening of Tuesday (March 22nd). At the time of writing, WBRC News said that rainfall amounts could be around 2 to 4 inches of rain during this period.

Source: WBRC News (

We've seen how bad this amount could get especially when it comes to all that runoff flash flooding.

Last week, you probably saw how bad these types of severe storms can impact growing areas like Birmingham City, Jefferson County, and Shelby County in Alabama.

Without really giving the state a break, flood levels and flood threats from rivers, runoff, and snowmelt can definitely add salt to the wound.

Since flood risks are the focal point of flood insurance when it comes to rating systems in both federal and private flood insurance, this begs the question:

Will this create another flood map update for these areas in Alabama?

March 2022 Flooding:
Will It Result in Flood Map Updates?

If I were to tell you to take a shot every time a good flood insurance agent says that these won't be affecting flood insurance at all, we would both need to get someone to drive us home.

This is because we already moved out of purely basing flood insurance rates and measuring risks through flood zones alone.

This is especially true with the Risk Rating 2.0 which started for most new policyholders in October 2022. When the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) moved out of the regular rating structure of using flood zones as the main basis, this only meant that your flood risks will be the focal point of federal flood insurance.

This only means that such type of consistent flooding due to heavy rainfall will only get you further deeper into higher risks which in turn can create flood maps being updated to show these risks for residents of Alabama.

There are a lot of factors that are already impacting the overall chance of floods in the state. This includes the following things, especially during this climate crisis:

  • Rising sea levels on the coast
  • Amount of precipitation in an area
  • Hurricane impacts across Alabama
  • Drought causes dirt not to be able to seep water properly

The climate conditions that we are facing are the byproduct of the same climate crisis around the world.

This is why in a recent video, we did a flood intensity comparison where we found that flooding last 2-3 years is significantly more frequent if you were to compare it with the last 10 - 15 years for Alabama.

You can watch that video below and read our blog about it by clicking here:

These are but a few things that impact your risks and based on the damaging floods from inches of rainfall that Alabama is experiencing, it's expected for the floodplain management and flood maps to reflect these risks.

— What does it mean for flood insurance and why does this matter if flood zones are no longer in the equation when it comes to rating systems?

Well, you only have to look at what these flood zones represent: flood risks in an area.

With that being said, it's best to really overhaul your flood insurance policy or get one for your property if there isn't one already. This is the best protection you can get when flooding happens.

We hope that everyone stays safe during this whole rainfall event which may even happen again in the upcoming weeks for this month. This is one thing we should all be prepared for as snow starts to melt and add to flood conditions.

So if you have questions on your flood risks in Alabama, how to get flood insurance, and anything related to floods and flood insurance click below to go to our Flood Learning Center or you can also talk to us.

The Flood Insurance Guru | 2054514294Flood Insurance Guru | Service | Knowledge Base

Remember, we have an educational background in flood mitigation which we use to help property owners like you understand your flood risks, insurance policies, and protect the value of your property long-term.

Chris Greene


Chris Greene

President of The Flood Insurance Guru
M.S. in Emergency Management with a focus in Flood Mitigation

Today, we want to talk about one of the most common flood insurance coverage questions that we get and we're getting this lately considering the number of floodings that are happening across the country:

Chris Greene


Chris Greene

President of The Flood Insurance Guru
M.S. in Emergency Management with a focus in Flood Mitigation

Tuesday (May 4, 2021), most of Alabama faced another flooding due to storms and torrential rains. This brought flooding to central Alabama that goes from 6 inches and up to 4 feet. A lot of properties were impacted, but today, we want to talk about filing that flood claim due to the recent flooding. Is it a good idea? What are the short-term and long-term impacts of filing these claims and generally, how can you make the best out of your flood insurance in the future?

Chris Greene


Chris Greene

President of The Flood Insurance Guru
M.S. in Emergency Management with a focus in Flood Mitigation