Spring is on the horizon, and with it comes the promise of warm sunshine, budding flowers and green lawns. But as the temperature rises, any snow that has accumulated on your property will thaw and may result in a watery mess, possibly resulting in the filing of a water damage insurance claim.
Clearing heavy snow from your rooftop is an important step in avoiding ice dams. As snow slowly melts and refreezes, ice dams can form, clogging your gutters. As the ice dams begin to melt, mold growth can occur. Damaged roof shingles and roof leaks are also common problems that can occur as a result of melting ice and snow.
Flooding is a major concern when the temperature increases, as melting snow around the house’s foundation can leak through basement walls and through the foundation. To help prevent basement flooding, shovel as much snow as possible away from the foundation of your home and make sure your roof is clear of excess snow.
Because flood insurance is an optional coverage that is often excluded from a typical homeowners insurance policy, if you live in an area that is susceptible to flooding, you may want to consider purchasing it. Melting snow that floods your yard and causes property damage to your home may not be covered under your homeowners policy unless you have flood insurance.
When it comes to flood insurance, you may immediately think of coastal regions or areas with low-lying land and multiple waterways. But floods can occur anywhere precipitation happens, and areas with heavy snowfall can be susceptible to flooding when the spring thaw occurs.
The cost of flood insurance can differ from situation to situation. Some factors that are taken into consideration are your home’s flood risk, the year your home was built and how it’s constructed, and the elevation of your property. The average cost of a National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policy is around $985 a year, but the rates vary from state to state, according to a January 2022 article by ValuePenguin.
K-Factor Advocates’ coverage areas rank near the middle in the average cost of flood insurance. South Dakota comes in at 15th, averaging around $1,099 per year. Michigan directly follows in 16th place, with an average of $1,080 per year. A couple of spots down at number 17, Wisconsin averages $1,076. Minnesota is at number 21, with an average of $1,002 per year. Further down the list, Montana comes in at number 31, with an average of $883 per year. North Dakota ranks at number 35, with an average of $819 per year, with Idaho trailing at number 37 and an average of $797 per year.
Florida is the most flood-prone state in the U.S., but it’s also the state with the most affordable flood insurance, at an average rate of $613 per year.
Flooding is the number one natural disaster in the U.S. According to a 2021 Stanford University study, flooding has caused nearly $75 billion in damages over the past three decades. Flash floods are the most dangerous form of flooding. The powerful force of heavy rainfall can cause water to rise rapidly and catch homeowners off guard without the opportunity to protect their property.
Floods happen in every state in the U.S., and the natural disaster kills more people in the nation every year than hurricanes, tornadoes or lightning. Flooding can happen in many circumstances, such as heavy rainfall, quickly melting snow, breaking dams or levees, or when ocean waves come ashore.
For areas with heavy snowfall, spring rains falling on melting snow can result in flash flooding. Melting ice near riverbanks and creeks can produce large chunks of ice that can wedge against bridges, causing the water to quickly rise. Snowmelt flooding typically occurs when the temperature rises quickly, rapidly melting the snow, and can be exacerbated by an immediate rainfall event. Snowmelt flooding can also lead to the flooding of creeks, streams and rivers, causing the water levels to quickly rise.
The most common form of flooding in the U.S. is river overflow. If you live in a low-lying area near a body of water, your property may be at risk for flooding. It’s important to make sure you have all the necessary precautions in place before a disaster occurs, so if you’re searching for a home in a certain area, it’s important to check out whether or not the land is in a flood plain. If so, this information could alter your decision to buy, or prompt you to prepare for the possibility of flooding if it’s an area you love.
Floods can also occur when a dam fails, releasing a deluge of rapid, uncontrolled water downstream. The worst flood in recorded U.S. history was when a dam failed in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, on May 31, 1889. 2,200 residents died in the catastrophe. Dam failures can be caused by a variety of factors. The most common reason is overtopping, when water spills over the dam due to a combination of heavy rainfall and poor spillway design.
If you’ve experienced water damage or a flooding event and are looking for a public adjuster in Montana, Idaho, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Minnesota or Michigan, K-Factor Advocates is comprised of a team of professionals that are well-equipped to help you through the process.
K-Factor Advocates is a public adjusting firm that specializes in insurance claim negotiation, policy language and interpretation, and claims estimating. K-Factor’s team of public adjusters work on behalf of the policyholder. Coverage areas include Montana, Idaho, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Michigan.Average flood insurance data source: ValuePenguin