Illinois Homeowners Should Prepare for Flooding Now

March 29, 2011

Do you have flood insurance to cover your Chicago home? Should you?

Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) is urging Illinois residents in flood-prone areas to protect their homes and businesses in advance of any flooding this year by investing in the National Flood Insurance program.

His advice comes after the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Army Corps of Engineers warned of possible heavy flooding this Spring in some areas of Illinois and around the country.

flooded basement

This would be so much worse without flood insurance.

“I have been in contact with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) and they have assured me that all necessary precautions are being taken,” said Durbin.

“In the meantime, it is important that all property owners fully understand their flood risk to decide whether the National Flood Insurance Program – which covers up to $350,000 in damages for homeowners and up to $1 million for business owners – is right for them.”

Through the National Flood Insurance Program, homeowners can claim up to $250,000 for their home and up to $100,000 for its contents in the event of a flood.

The cost to carry flood insurance averages about $1,000 to $1,500 per year. For homeowners who live in moderate-to-low risk flood zones, a low-cost Preferred Risk Policy can be purchased for as low as $129 a year.

But there is a time issue involved.

“Residents and business owners who do not have flood insurance 30 days prior to the day flood damage occurs are not eligible to claim assistance through the National Flood Insurance Program,” said Durbin.

“If the president declares a disaster after a flood event, the uninsured can only apply for a maximum of $29,800 – much less than what is available through the program.”

For more information on the National Flood Insurance Program, visit or call (800) 427-4661. Soon.

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