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Three quarters of over 1,000 homeowners surveyed across 40 states earlier this year said they have flood insurance coverage, but the true number is less than 5 percent, according to a report announced by private flood insurer, Neptune Flood last week.

The third annual Neptune Consumer Survey of Flood Awareness, was conducted in May 2022 in partnership with the University of South Florida Customer Experience Lab – St. Petersburg.

According to the survey report, some 19 percent of homeowners erroneously don’t think they are in a flood zone and a further 17 percent don’t know their flood zone.

These and other findings highlight the continued need for education about flood insurance, which in the United States is generally not included as part of a homeowners insurance policy and must be purchased separately either from the NFIP or from a private provider such as Neptune.

The homeowners do have an appreciation for the growing risk, however. Two-thirds of the homeowners, who were surveyed months before Hurricane Ian made landfall in Florida, said that based on the activity level of hurricanes and floods in the U.S. in 2021, they believed flood risk for their primary residence in the coming years will be higher than it was in the past.

“Now in its third year, the survey continues to show that consumers are aware of flood risk but have a hard time understanding how to protect themselves from that risk.” said Trevor Burgess, CEO of Neptune Flood, in a statement about the report. “Hurricane Ian, which is projected to be the second-costliest U.S. flood event on record, further highlighted the need to make sure homeowners know how to measure and insure flood risk. These results help us understand where Neptune, and the industry as a whole, needs to focus our efforts in educating home and business owners of the tens of millions of buildings at risk for flooding that are not insured.”

Among other findings in the report:

  • More than 85 percent of homeowner respondents said that flood risk is an important consideration when purchasing a new home.
  • Just over 68 percent said that the cost of flood insurance has stopped them from purchasing a home at some point.
  • Among the individuals who said they purchased flood insurance because it was required (by law or lender), 84 also said they would purchase it even if it were not required.

Source: Neptune Flood