DENTON, Texas -- As five New Mexico counties affected by flooding make repairs to damaged infrastructure, officials with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the New Mexico Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DHSEM) are reminding everyone about the importance of flood insurance: Here are myths and facts about the program:
MYTH: You can’t buy flood insurance if you are located in a high-flood-risk area.
FACT: You can buy federal flood insurance no matter where you live if your community participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), unless your property is in an area covered by the Coastal Barrier Resources Act of 1982 (CBRA). The NFIP was created in 1968 to provide flood insurance to people who live in areas with the greatest risk of flooding, called Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs) or the regulatory floodplain.
MYTH: You can’t buy flood insurance immediately before or during a flood.
FACT: You can purchase flood coverage at any time. There is a 30-day waiting period after you’ve applied and paid the premium before the policy is effective.
MYTH: Homeowners’ insurance policies cover flooding.
FACT: Unfortunately, many homeowners do not find out until it is too late that their homeowners’ policies do not cover flooding.
MYTH: Flood insurance is available only for homeowners.
FACT: Flood insurance is available to protect homes, condominiums, apartments and nonresidential buildings, including commercial structures.
MYTH: You can’t buy flood insurance if your property has been flooded.
FACT: It doesn’t matter how many times your home, apartment or business has been flooded. You are still eligible to purchase flood insurance provided that your community participates in the NFIP.
MYTH: Only residents of high-risk flood zones need to insure their property.
FACT: Even if you live in an area that is not flood-prone, it’s advisable to have flood insurance. One-third of the NFIP’s claims come from such areas.
For more information, visit www.floodsmart.gov.