New Jersey is highly diverse, and not just in terms of residents. Drive 20 miles in any direction and you’ll be presented with a completely different experience. Between farmland, wilderness areas, suburbs and cities, NJ has it all.
For many of us, the best part of New Jersey is the shore. It’s iconic. However, coastal properties are not the only exposure to flooding. New Jersey is surrounded by water on three sides; Besides the Atlantic Ocean, The Delaware River and Bay, NJ contains a variety of lakes, rivers, streams, creeks and other bodies of water. To protect the beautiful homes, coastal businesses and other property near our beaches, inlets, bays, rivers and other waterways, flood insurance is essential. Floods can happen away from a body of water just by the rapid accumulation of run off waters (for example, a heavy rain) that inundate as few as two properties including your own.
Your Flood Zone Determines Your Risk
Every community in New Jersey can participate in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The NFIP provides flood insurance to homeowners, renters and business owners. In fact, some towns have made the extra effort to reduce flood rates in their communities by qualifying for the discounts in the “Community Rating System,” with towns earning discounts up to 45% for all the flood insurance policyholders in that town. The cost of the insurance is dependent on the town you are located in and your individual risk profile.
For many years, the NFIP program was the only provider of flood insurance to property owners. In recent years, we have seen private insurers begin to offer flood insurance products that provide the same coverage as NFIP, and sometimes at a lower cost. In addition, private insurers can offer special form policies with higher limits that can help a property owner restore their structures to pre-loss condition, along with some additional coverage that the NFIP does not offer. Some of the additional coverage may include additional living expense, coverage on structures that are ineligible in the NFIP (such as swimming pools) and replacement cost on contents.
Zones B, C and X: Moderate to Low Risk. Flood Insurance Optional.
Zones B, C and X have a moderate to low risk of flooding. As a result, property owners with mortgages from federally backed lending institutions are not required to purchase flood insurance. However, flood insurance is still available and worth considering. About 25% of all flood claims filed with The NFIP are located in low hazard zones!
Rates for flood insurance in these zones are very reasonable. Don’t risk a lot to save a little.
Zone A: High Risk. Flood Insurance Mandatory for Most Mortgaged Properties.
Zone As are all high risk. A property in a high risk flood zone has a 26% chance of flooding over a 30-year mortgage period. This is why flood insurance is mandatory for properties that are subject to a mortgage. However, there are different levels of risk, which are broken down into the following:
-Zone A has a 1% annual chance of flooding.
-Zones AE and A1-A30 have a 1% annual chance of flooding.
-Zone AH is at risk for shallow flooding with depths of 1-3 feet. Zone AH also has a 1% annual risk of flooding.
-Zone AO has a river or stream flood hazard and a greater than 1% annual chance of flooding, with depths of 1-3 feet.
-Zone AR only has a temporary risk for increased flooding. Typically, these areas have a dam or levee that is being built or repaired.
-Zone A99 has a 1% annual chance of flooding.
Zone V: High Risk Coastal. Flood Insurance Mandatory.
Zone Vs are high risk coastal areas. Flood insurance is mandatory for most mortgaged properties. People living in Zone V have a 1% or greater annual flooding risk. Zones VE and V1-V30 also have a 1% or greater annual flood risk and the potential for storm wave hazards.
Zone D: Not Yet Determined. Flood Insurance Optional.
Zone D has had no flood hazard analysis, so the risk has not yet been determined. Flood insurance is available in this zone even though the flood hazard has not been assessed by the NFIP.
Floods can happen to anyone, even those who don’t live in a high risk area. As mentioned above, floods happen in low hazard areas and sometimes far away from any body of water. For a free quote on flood insurance for your home or business, call us at Danskin Agency and we will find the best option for you.