9 in 10 American Homeowners Don’t Have Flood Insurance, ValuePenguin Finds

Floods are the nation’s most common natural disaster, but nearly 9 in 10 American families aren’t adequately insured against the costly damages caused by flooding.

A new study from personal finance website ValuePenguin.com has found that just 7 percent of American homeowners have a flood insurance policy, compared to the 91 percent of owner-occupied homes who have homeowners insurance.

With the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season less than a month away, the need for flood insurance has never been more urgent.

Nearly three-fourths of U.S. adults think destructive weather events such as hurricanes are getting worse, and over 40 percent of Americans have encountered weather events that caused property damage or forced them to evacuate their homes.

Yet flood insurance coverage ratios vary widely by state. 

Key Findings:

  • The states with the highest percentage of homeowners with flood insurance are Louisiana (44 percent), Florida (36 percent), Hawaii (23 percent), South Carolina (16 percent) and New Jersey (11 percent).
  • The states with the lowest rate of coverage are Minnesota (0.6 percent), Utah (0.6 percent), Michigan (0.8 percent), Wisconsin (0.8 percent) and Ohio (1.1 percent).
  • The average cost of a flood insurance policy through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is $699 per year, but flood insurance premiums vary significantly across the country.
  • The five most expensive states to purchase flood insurance are Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania, where premiums are 69-100 percent above the national average. On the flip side, NFIP policies in Texas, Maryland and Florida are the cheapest in the nation, and cost 17-21 percent below the national average.

ValuePenguin calculated share of homeowners with a flood insurance policy by comparing NFIP policies in force (source: FEMA) to owner-occupied housing units (source: U.S. Census Bureau). This analysis does not include private flood insurance policies, which make up a minimal share of the overall flood insurance market.

To view the full report, visit: valuepenguin.com

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