BOSTON (CBS) – What a mess down in the Carolinas from the storm and the flooding. And while the focus for now is rightly on the ongoing risk to human life, there’s a financial calamity awaiting many of those affected that we here in New England should take careful note of.
According to experts quoted in USA Today, only ten-to-twenty percent of homeowners along the North Carolina coast have flood insurance, and less than three-percent of inland residents threatened by flooding rivers and creeks have coverage. Looking statewide, less than ten-percent of homeowners in North and South Carolina have insurance that can help them recover from flooding damage, which is not covered by standard homeowner’s insurance.
What about here at home? A 2013 study found Massachusetts has the worst exposure to hurricane damage of any New England state, with more than a hundred thousand homes at risk. A 2016 survey found barely 16,000 homes here had any type of flood insurance.
Are you prepared to cover out-of-pocket the thousands of dollars in losses that just an inch of interior water can cause? When you consider the potential damage of the one-to-two feet of water some places are getting buried under down south right now, the costs could easily run much higher than that. And while Massachusetts flood-insurance premiums are the fourth highest in the country, with an average annual cost of over $1,200, you can do the math yourself to determine if it’s worth it.
The disaster in the Carolinas can’t happen here, you’re thinking? Remember how a simple nor’easter flooded the Seaport last March? Better think again.