What Water Damage is Covered by Your Myrtle Beach Homeowner’s Insurance?
When discussing water damage and the insurance policies needed, Myrtle Beach residents need to think differently. Whether deciding between homeowner’s insurance or flood insurance, residents of Myrtle Beach need to be able to identify the differences between the two. Aside from flooding that occasionally occurs, residents also must worry about hurricanes impacting the Myrtle Beach area and their homes from about June until November. Ultimately, this will affect the type of home insurance needed to protect your home should a hurricane or any type of natural disaster, that deals with water, comes our way.
Hurricane season begins on June 1st and runs until November 30th each year. A hurricane is a violent, tropical storm that brings heavy rain, thunder, lightning, tornadoes, and high wind damage. Hurricanes can reach gigantic sizes and bring catastrophic damage to areas that you live. These storms are broken into 4 different categories which are: tropical depressions, tropical storms, hurricanes, and major hurricanes. Tropical Depressions are systems with max winds of 38 mph, while tropical storms have sustained winds of 73 mph. Moving on to hurricanes, their winds can reach up to 74 mph, while anything considered a major hurricane has winds 111 mph or higher. Studies have also shown that for the past 9 years we’ve had a hurricane impact our coastal region, with storms either striking the area or passing within 50 miles of our coast line (https://www.nhc.noaa.gov/climo/images/return_hurr.jpg).
As stated earlier these storms can cause flooding and cause substantial wind damage. Little do people know that homeowner’s insurance only covers damages caused by water from leakages from appliances or sewers, so if your home is damaged by water from a more natural source, you won’t be able to get reimbursed for that. To get covered by hurricane water damage you must sign up for flood insurance. The flood insurance will cover you if a storm hits and water starts to enter your home through flooding, and you’ll be covered by the storm. Whether you need the flood insurance or not depends on the area that you live in.
In the past 5 years South Carolina was impacted by hurricane Matthew, Florence, and Dorian. Hurricane Matthew brought with it 8 to 12 inches of rain with some isolated spots reaching up to 20 inches of rain. Florence brought in the most damage to our area with serious flooding, and a storm surge that was well over 10 feet. While hurricane Dorian brought in mostly a storm surge. With hurricane Dorian our community wasn’t impacted as bad as with Florence and Matthew. Although, we still must take the necessary precautions that we have to take with every storm that heads our way. With Florence and Matthew, the way the storms hit caused rivers in North Carolina to flood bringing in the water down to Conway area which in return caused Conway and Myrtle Beach to flood significantly. Ultimately, when these storms stall providing continuously rain, it causes the river levels to rise which in return causes the flooding until all the excess water reaches the ocean. For our area that basically means that flood insurance is essential because we’re an area that is very prone to flooding.
To reiterate “water damage” (ex. Leaky pump) is covered in the homeowners insurance policy and “flood damage” is covered by flood insurance policies. Flood policies only cover damage from water rising from the ground up. The homeowner’s policy covers water damage from leaky appliances and water damage from hurricanes or any wind or hail event, as long as your policy includes the coverage.
To find out if your home needs flood insurance you can contact our representative Kathy James. Kathy will help you find the value of your home, proximity to any bodies of water, see if your home is in a flood zone, and then help create a homeowner’s insurance and/or flood insurance package for you. The value of your home helps determines how much you may need to budget for your insurance package. Your proximity to any bodies of water is needed to help calculate flood levels, and how it’ll affect your home plus to also see if you’re in any flood zone at all. Lastly, Kathy will help you craft your insurance package to help you get the most out of plan, if we were to experience another storm like Florence and receive the same amount of flooding.