Everything You Need to Know About Flood Insurance in Maine

If you live in a high-risk area of Maine, you may be required to purchase flood insurance.
Written by Kara Vanderbeek
Reviewed by Melanie Reiff
Maine
property owners are required to purchase flood insurance if their property is located in a high-risk zone and they have a government-backed mortgage. If you live in a low- to moderate-risk zone, you may qualify for a low cost preferred risk policy.
While floods in Maine are typically characterized as short and fast, even a small amount of water can cause severe damage to your property. Unfortunately, standard homeowners policies do not
cover damage caused by flooding
, and flood insurance must be obtained as separate, additional coverage.
If you want to keep your home and belongings safe from any disaster, flood insurance is a must. Luckily, home and
car insurance
comparison app
Jerry
has created this guide to flood insurance in Maine to provide you with all the information you need to stay protected. 
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What is flood insurance?

Flood insurance is a type of property insurance that covers a home and its contents from damages due to flooding.
Flooding is the number one natural hazard in the United States, occurring throughout the country and causing damages in each state. 
Thus, it’s important to recognize that flood insurance is not covered under standard homeowners insurance policies and must be purchased as a separate policy.

What does flood insurance cover?

Flood insurance can be broken down into two distinct types of coverage: building coverage and contents coverage
Building coverage protects the structure of your property, including such aspects as furnaces, plumbing and electric systems, kitchen appliances, and cabinets, while contents coverage protects your personal belongings. 
For flood insurance purposes, personal property includes items such as electronics, clothing, jewelry, and furniture.
Keep in mind that flood insurance policies do not cover items such as cars, landscaping outside of the property, valuable papers, and additional living expenses incurred as the result of a flood.
Further, flood insurance will only cover losses that were a direct result of a weather-related flood. According to FEMA, a flood is defined as an excess of water on land that is usually dry, affecting two or more acres or multiple properties.
Thus, water damage incurred from a source outside of the scope of FEMA’s definition would not be covered by insurance. This includes basement floods due to a backed-up sump pump. 
For a detailed outline of what is and what isn’t covered under each type of insurance, refer to the table below:
Type of coverage
What it covers
What it doesn’t cover
Building
Electrical and plumbing systems Water heaters and furnaces Large appliances like dishwashers or refrigerators Permanently installed bookcases, cabinets, and paneling Permanently installed carpets Window blinds Foundational walls, staircases, and anchorages Detached garages Fuel tanks, solar panels, and well water tanks/pumps
Decks and patios Swimming pools Fences and landscaping
Contents
Clothing Furniture Electronic equipment Curtains Washing machine and dryer Portable air conditioners, including window units Carpets not included in building coverage Valuables such as artwork up to $2,500
Valuable papers Currency Anything stored in a basement

Do you need flood insurance in Maine?

To secure lending to buy, build, or improve a property, Maine homeowners living in Special Flood Hazard Areas may be required to have flood insurance
Although not required, having flood insurance in low-to-moderate risk areas is recommended as well.  
Since 25% of all flood claims come from non-high-risk areas, the decreased level of risk does not equate to no risk at all, and no one wants to be left with having to cover the losses out of pocket. 
Further, if your property is located in a low-to-moderate risk zone, you may qualify for a low-cost preferred risk policy to protect your home.
If you own a home in one of the 23,000
National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)
participating communities, you can qualify for coverage based on the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) assessment of your area’s level of risk (low-, moderate-, or high-risk). 

What flood zones require flood insurance in Maine?

To identify specific risk levels unique to different locations, FEMA created  Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs). With the identified risk level of an area, mortgage lenders are better able to determine insurance rates. 
Areas of designated moderate- to low-risk zones are identified on FEMA flood maps with a B, C, or X, while designated high risk-zones are identified on FEMA flood maps with an A or V.
Remember, if you own property in a designated high-risk zone and have a federally backed mortgage, you are required to purchase flood insurance.
If you’re unsure about your property’s zone of risk, use FEMA’s
Flood Map Service Center
or
Flood Factor®
.
Key Takeaway If you live in a designated high-risk flood zone (starting with A or V) and have a government mortgage, you must purchase flood insurance. 

How much does flood insurance cost in Maine?

Flood insurance in Maine costs an average of $1113 per year or $93 per month through the NFIP.
However, these numbers are subject to change. Beginning in April 2022, the NFIPs new Risk Rating 2.0 methodology will increase the monthly cost of flood insurance for roughly 66% of homeowners, while around 34% of homeowners will pay less.
Under this new system, the cost of insurance is calculated based on the unique risk of each property.
Keep in mind that insurance premiums for homeowners living in higher-risk areas will be higher than for those in low-risk areas. 

How to save money on flood and auto insurance in Maine 

The extra cost of flood insurance can feel overwhelming for some homeowners. Luckily, there are ways you can cut the costs of flood insurance in Maine, so you can focus on getting the protection you need.
To save money on flood insurance in Maine, you can follow FEMA’s
recommended flood risk mitigation practices
. In addition, you may opt for a higher deductible or contents-only coverage. Another way to reduce the cost of insurance is to submit an
elevation certificate
to your insurance agent.
You’ve got your house covered in the event of a flood—but what about your car?
Unfortunately, flood insurance does not extend to items such as your vehicle. Luckily,
Jerry
can help you find the right car insurance in minutes! Jerry’s insurance experts will find you competitive quotes from dozens of top insurance providers to find you the best savings. 
On average, Jerry users save $887 a year on car insurance. That’s nearly the cost of insuring your home from flooding for an entire year!
“I thought my previous insurance rate was fair given the model of car I drive, but after
Jerry
gave me quotes, I realized I could pay only $84 a month for the same coverage through Plymouth Rock. I plan to shop for auto insurance through Jerry from now on!” —Jill I.
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