Shoals insurance agent explains the high cost of not having flood insurance

Many homeowners in the Shoals whose homes were damage by flooding don't have flood insurance.

Posted: Feb 27, 2019 6:08 PM
Updated: Feb 27, 2019 6:58 PM

With so much flooding in the Shoals, there isn't an exact count on how many homes have been damaged, but there could be at least 50. Many of these homeowners don't have flood insurance.

On Saturday, the water was up and over Highway 20 and while these floodwaters have receded, the park is still closed and blocked off all the way up to the entrance. On Wednesday, an insurance agent explained to WAAY 31 why many people who live in the Shoals don't have flood insurance.

A local insurance agent, Tim Sherrill said in 1968, Congress passed the National Flood Insurance Act, which created the National Flood Insurance Program.

"Private insurance companies could not figure out the correct way to price flooding, so Congress had to pass an act to get it to where it would cover," Sherrill said.

Many people WAAY 31 has spoken with in Nathan Estates whose homes have flooded don't have flood insurance. Sherrill said if you don't live in a floodzone flood, insurance could be reasonably priced.

"You're talking $200 to $500 a year and escrow can pay for it, depending on if the banks require it or not. Now, if you live in a floodzone, you could be looking at 2,000 to 4,000 on top of your normal homeowners insurance," he said.

That's the thing; it's expensive, Sherrill said. This is why a lot of people don't have it. With a lot of flooding in the Shoals and homeowners without flood insurance, Sherrill said people need to document how their insurance companies won't cover the costs.

"If you went through a situation like that, just always document everything. If it is a conversation with your insurance agent, you can document that. Just make sure you are getting all the information you possibly can," he said.

Sherrill said since this flooding event in the Shoals, his phone has been ringing off the hook with people wanting quotes on flood insurance. 

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