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What flood insurance covers

In the event of a flood, your National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policy covers direct physical losses to your structure and belongings.

What does my policy cover?

Purchasing flood insurance will help protect the things you value. The NFIP offers two types of coverage – building coverage and contents coverage – to protect your home and belongings. Here are examples of what’s covered with NFIP flood insurance:

Building coverage protects your:

  • Electrical and plumbing systems

  • Furnaces and water heaters

  • Refrigerators, cooking stoves, and built-in appliances like dishwashers

  • Permanently installed carpeting

  • Permanently installed cabinets, paneling, and bookcases

  • Window blinds

  • Foundation walls, anchorage systems, and staircases.

  • Detached garages

  • Fuel tanks, well water tanks and pumps, and solar energy equipment

Contents coverage protects your:

  • Personal belongings such as clothing, furniture, and electronic equipment

  • Curtains

  • Washer and dryer

  • Portable and window air conditioners

  • Microwave oven

  • Carpets not included in building coverage (e.g., carpet installed over wood floors)

  • Valuable items such as original artwork and furs (up to $2,500)

What isn’t covered by flood insurance?

When determining coverage, the cause of flooding matters.

Flood insurance covers losses directly caused by flooding. In simple terms, a flood is an excess of water on land that is normally dry, affecting two or more acres of land or two or more properties.

For example, damage caused by a sewer backup is covered if the backup is a direct result of flooding. If the sewer backup is not caused directly by flooding, the damage is not covered.

Items not covered by building or contents coverage:

  • Temporary housing and additional living expenses incurred while the building is being repaired or is unable to be occupied

  • Property outside of an insured building. For example, landscaping, wells, septic systems, decks and patios, fences, seawalls, hot tubs, and swimming pools

  • Financial losses caused by business interruption

  • Currency, precious metals, stock certificates and other valuable papers

  • Cars and most self-propelled vehicles, including their parts

  • Personal property kept in basements


Have questions about your coverage? Talk to your insurance agent about what is and isn’t covered by your policy, and check out the NFIP terms.


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