Many homeowners lack adequate flood coverage

One in five claims in not from high risk property


SAN ANTONIO – Charles' Farris' waterfront  home took in more than two feet of water in Superstorm Sandy last year. His insurance came nowhere near covering the cost of replacing everything he lost.

"It was heartbreaking, " he said.

Home owners  have a lot of misconceptions about flood coverage, according to Consumer Reports.

"Homeowner's insurance  doesn't cover flood damage for either your home or your belongings," said Consumer Reports' Tobi Stanger. "For that, you need flood insurance, and we recommend coverage or both your home and contents."

Even with contents coverage, you'll get only the value of your belongings when the flood hit, not what it will cost buy new.

"If you're a homeowner, getting enough coverage for the structure itself is also really important," Stanger said. "Our advice, get as much coverage as you can."

The website www.floodsmart.gov  can help you determine coverage and cost. Most residential flood insurance comes through FEMA, so costs are standard.

"A warning, just because you don't live near a body of water doesn't mean you don't need flood insurance. Heavy rains could cause flooding," Stanger said.

In fact, one in five claims comes from an area not considered high risk of flooding.

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