We get asked about Sanibel Flood Insurance ALL the time. And while we know a good deal about insurance, we are not insurance experts!
In fact, every now and then, we call in the true experts to help keep us abreast of insurance industry changes. Que, Chris Heidrick, of Heidrick & Co. Insurance, who recently walked over to our office (they’re right next door), and chatted with our team about some changes that have affected the insurance industry.
Chris and his team are AMAZING! They help many of our clients in the process of obtaining Sanibel Flood Insurance, Sanibel Wind Insurance, Sanibel Home Insurance, and really any other type of insurance you’d need living on Sanibel Island.
Is Sanibel Flood Insurance Required?
In short, if you are obtaining financing for a Sanibel home purchase, your lender will require flood insurance. The entire island is zoned by FEMA as a Special Flood Hazard Area. If you are paying cash for a property, it is your decision whether or not to purchase flood insurance. We suggest chatting with a local insurance agent to fully understand the cost, benefits, and risks for your specific property.
Sanibel Flood Insurance Quotes
Getting insurance quotes is one of the first “tasks” of the due diligence period when purchasing a Sanibel home. Chris Heidrick explained that it’s no longer easy to provide a “ballpark range” for flood insurance on Sanibel, especially since FEMA recently implemented its Risk Rating 2.0 system.
The new rating system is dynamic. It uses a number of variables like “replacement cost” and property elevation, as opposed to rating a home solely by flood zone. If the home you are purchasing already has a flood insurance policy, this is extremely helpful for you! It will help your insurance agent to come up with comparative pricing.
The same goes for an elevation certificate. Since it is property-specific, it can help you obtain a more accurate risk rating. The more documentation you have on a property, the better, and that’s where your real estate agent can step in to help!
Three Important Indicators
While it’s hard to share generalizations about Sanibel Flood Insurance, especially now with the new risk rating system, Chris did share with us three main questions for your consideration when looking for a home to purchase.
Factors for Consideration:
1. How far from a flooding source is the property?
2. What is the elevation of the home?
3. Does the current homeowner have a flood policy, and what are they paying?
Chris believes the new system does a good job communicating the true flood risk of properties in Southwest Florida. As a homeowner, this is important to understand. Earlier, we mentioned who is required to have insurance, not whether or not you should have insurance. That is a great conversation to have with a local insurance expert.
We hope you found this information helpful!
We are more than happy to put you in contact with Heidrick & Co., or any of our local experts here on Sanibel and Captiva Island. Flood insurance is a big topic, and one worth getting an expert’s opinion on. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 239-472-1950 for more information about Sanibel real estate.