Living near the coast can come with several advantages – you’re close to beach access, you can easily enjoy a variety of water activities, and you don’t have to go far to enjoy tranquil seaside views. But what kind of property insurance do you need in your area? For homeowners who live close to the ocean yet miles from the waterfront, Muller Insurance is available to help. We serve homeowners in coastal areas and beyond, including New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Nevada, and other states. Here, we’ll explain whether your insurance coverage should account for ocean storms and other perils.
Basic Home Insurance
Protecting one of your family’s biggest investments – your home – starts with having the ideal insurance product. A standard home insurance policy covers many things. This includes damage to your home due to fire, smoke, vandalism, or theft, as well as your personal belongings inside, such as:
However, most standard home policies may not provide sufficient coverage during hurricane season. Whether or not your home may be affected by an ocean storm often depends on how close you live to the water. If you reside in a coastal neighborhood that’s prone to devastating storms each year, you may need additional wind and water coverage that your homeowner insurance doesn’t provide.
Insurance for Homes with Flood Risk
One of the primary aspects to consider as a coastal homeowner is flooding. If a storm rolls through the area with heavy rainfall, will your property likely be left with a few inches (or feet) of excess water? Most basic home insurance policies exclude flooding. Residents who live in a flood zone near the ocean or surrounding waterways should consider having this additional coverage option. Flood insurance can be purchased in a couple of ways:
- Private flood insurance: An insurance agent can recommend a flood insurance policy that’s customized to your needs. This can be purchased on its own or acquired in addition to a federal policy.
- National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP): Backed by FEMA, this plan offers basic coverage to participating communities. While less flexible and likely more costly than private flood insurance, it could prove beneficial in certain instances.
The cost of flood insurance depends on several factors, such as your location and level of risk. Partnering with an insurance agent can help you find the best rate possible in your area.
Property Insurance for Homes with Windstorm Risk
The other key thing to consider is how susceptible your area is to hurricanes. If you live in a coastal area prone to high winds that could cause devastating damage, make sure your insurance will provide ample coverage to help you recover. Wind insurance can be obtained as:
- A state-mandated insurance plan: Fair Access to Insurance Requirements (FAIR) plans offer last-resort coverage through a state-run pool for those who qualify.
- A beach plan (similar to FAIR): This state-mandated plan is offered in specific Atlantic and Gulf coastal communities.
- Windstorm insurance policy: A separate policy can be purchased to cover windstorm and hail damage.
- A home insurance endorsement: Your insurance provider might offer an endorsement for windstorm coverage. This benefit also may include a separate deductible.
The farther you are from coastal areas, your risk for hurricane damage is likely smaller. However, partnering with an insurance agent can help make it easier to find a well-balanced policy or combination of policies that will suit your needs best.
How an Independent Insurance Agent Can Help
Your home is a valuable investment, and you can protect it with the right shoreline home insurance solutions. Understanding your options is the first step toward safeguarding your property. An experienced agent can help you:
- Understand your policy – what it covers and where it lacks
- Figure out what additional coverage you may need in your area
- Find solutions that are tailored to your situation
- Help you get the best insurance rates possible
One of the benefits of working with an independent insurance agent is that they have your best interests at heart. At Muller Insurance, we help homeowners in coastal areas and beyond, including New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Nevada, and other states. Let us help you find property insurance policies that are appropriate for your region and level of risk. Contact us today.