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Don’t let your financial security get washed away

Posted May 21, 2014 in Advice Column, Waukee

Before floodwaters lap at your front door, make sure your financial security isn’t in danger of being washed away.

Floodwaters can be a nasty cocktail of water, mud, sewage, animal waste and chemicals. A flood can ruin your home and belongings. Without flood insurance, you’re likely to be on your own to pay for damage caused by flooding.

Many homeowners have a false sense of security because they believe that their homeowner’s insurance covers flooding. Homeowner policies typically do not cover flood damage.

Other people believe that federal disaster assistance will provide them with full compensation in the event of a flood. This assistance often comes in the form of a low-interest loan to help rebuild after flood damage. This is often insufficient compensation for the losses of flood victims.

Plus, federal disaster assistance loans are only available if the federal government formally declares a disaster. Few flood events are declared federal disasters, according to National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) officials. That’s not a gamble you want to take.

There’s only one way to rest easy during wet months — purchase flood insurance through the NFIP. You must live in a community that participates in the NFIP to qualify for National Flood Insurance. Visit http://www.fema.gov/fema/csb.shtm to find out if your community participates in the program.

You may be eligible to buy federal flood insurance through your local Country® Financial representative. You might be surprised how inexpensive it is. Rates depend on whether you live in a low-to-moderate or a high-risk flood zone as well as the amount of coverage you need.

You may believe you don’t need flood insurance because you live in a low-risk area. Almost a quarter of all flood insurance claims come from areas with low-to-moderate flood risk. Those living in low-risk areas may qualify for the lower cost Preferred Risk Policy, which provides contents coverage beginning at $49 per year and building plus contents coverage starting at $129 a year.

Don’t wait to shore up your financial security until it’s too late. There is a 30-day waiting period for federal flood insurance to take effect.

Visit your Country Financial representative to learn more about flood insurance. Check out www.floodsmart.gov for more information about the NFIP.

Information provided by Pablo Castillo of Country Financial, 650 S. Prairie View Drive, Suite 200, West Des Moines, 515-223-7182.





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