News & Announcements
New Mexicans Should Consider Flood Insurance as
Monsoon Season Approaches
SANTA FE, NM – While flood protection might be the last concern of New Mexicans these days given our current period of drought, residents and business owners -- even those who live in areas not rated at high risk of flooding -- should consider purchasing a flood insurance policy now.
As the yearly monsoon season gets underway, New Mexico is facing another potential disaster. Flood risk is higher as a direct result of the wildfires burning thousands of acres in the state this year, according to hazard mitigation specialists with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). When fire burns away trees and other vegetation, healthy roots that soak up rainwater are lost. Storm runoff can cause severe erosion, mudslides and flooding.
While the highest risk of wildfire-related flooding is for properties burned in the fires, it also rises for homes downstream or below scorched areas. Such conditions are one reason flooding is the most common natural disaster in the U.S. Yet, most homeowner insurance policies do not cover flood damage.
A flood insurance policy is the best option for homeowners, renters, condo owners/renters, and commercial owners/renters. Most flood insurance is written through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which is administered by FEMA. Due to the waiting period, NFIP policies become effective 30 days after the premium is paid.
“Don’t wait until the forecast calls for a downpour before deciding to insure against flood damage,” said Andrew Phelps, Emergency Manager for the City of Santa Fe. “Purchasing an NFIP policy now will give some peace of mind should a flood occur.”
Flood insurance can usually be obtained from the same agent who handles a person’s homeowners, renters, or commercial insurance policy, or a list of agents can be found on the NFIP website at www.floodsmart.gov. The interactive website also offers an easy way to get the estimated annual cost of flood insurance for a specific address.