Flood insurance can really take your time and you can't really blame them since this is an insurance policy that will be saving you from flood damage by insuring your property and its contents. As we approach, hurricane season, storms, and risk of flooding seem to be an everyday worry, you should be aware of when your flood insurance actually takes effect.
From applying to having the actual policy take effect, you really have to commit your effort and time to it. No wonder why a lot of customers would ask us, how long do I have to wait for my flood insurance? What is really the waiting period on a flood insurance policy? Today's video will answer all of that for you.
Now the period for flood insurance taking effect really depends on where you're getting it. You have two options here: the federal flood insurance via National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the private flood insurance (Private Flood) market.
NFIP Waiting Period
Let's talk about the federal government's answer to flood insurance first, the NFIP. Now, there are some misconceptions that we hear about the waiting period for the NFIP flood insurance. Some would say that it's strictly is 30 days, when in fact it depends on your situation.
For example, if you're closing on a house, there's no waiting period. You only have to provide the payment of premium within a 30-day waiting period. This means that it's going to depend on how quick you are in getting it done with the payment in connection to the house closing. It's important to note that you have to have proof of residence. This can be through a driver's license, utility bill, or anything document that shows you're already living on the property.
The other 30-day waiting period is if it's not for a mortgage loan closing. This means even after you submitted your application, you still have to follow the 30-day waiting period for FEMA and the NFIP to have your flood insurance policy in effect.
This time frame is very different from the 13-month period for map revision concerns, the 30-day grace period for flood claims, and other processes involving the NFIP and FEMA flood insurance which some customers get confused with.
In special cases, if the purchase of flood insurance was made within the 13-month period after a map revision and your property was mapped into a zone with higher flood risk or the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), then you'll only have to follow a one-day waiting period for your flood policy to take effect and become active. It's important to emphasize that the NFIP and FEMA only grant this waiting period if the property is in a high-risk area. So, as you can see, the NFIP and FEMA have a case-to-case basis on the exact waiting period for a flood insurance policy.
Remember, flood insurance coverage from the NFIP will be a max $250,000 building coverage for residential property and this can go up to $500,000 for commercial properties with a $100,000 content coverage. You can learn more about the National Flood Insurance Program through our Podcast below:
Private Flood Waiting Period
On the other side of the coin, we can look at the private policies waiting period when buying a private market flood insurance. Private flood policies generally take up to 15 days for them to take effect after the initial purchase of flood insurance. Now, it's important to note that the waiting period on private flood depends on the carriers or the private sellers of your policy.
As you can see, there's a lot of private flood insurance options in this market. For example, the Zurich Residential Private Flood Insurance generally has no waiting period after purchase. We should emphasize the 15 days will be the max waiting period, but generally, most carriers only take up to 48 hours from the initial purchase for your policy to become active.
When it comes to flood coverage, it's notable that private insurance flood coverage doesn't have a maxed value, so you can get full coverage for your property even if it's worth $10,000,000 with up to $1,000,000 for contents coverage plus additional living expenses, loss of use, and replacement costs. This is why we recommend private flood for those who own expensive homes and contents since you'll be sure to get back everything from the flood loss. You can learn more about the private flood by streaming our podcast below.
Remember, we have an educational background in flood mitigation and we want to share this knowledge with you, so you too can be prepared when crap happens, so if you have questions on these flood insurance options, their respective waiting period, what's the best flood insurance for you, or any questions about flood, feel free to reach out to us. You can also visit our YouTube channel and consider subscribing to get your daily dose of flood education videos. Click the links below to get started.