Pennsylvania Politicians Warn Over Changing Flood Insurance Issues

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  • The areas across the country that may be most vulnerable to flooding are occasionally given new rules by which they must abide when it comes to having flood insurance. And while the most recent changes were put into place some time ago, many still may not be aware that they’re supposed to carry such coverage. Now, some politicians are urging increased cognizance of these rules, and the purchasing of these kinds of plans. Insurance agents may likewise want to advise their clients about the benefits of having federal flood insurance, and assuage whatever concerns consumers might have about taking on yet another potentially costly insurance policy.

    Many people may not think of their areas as being particularly vulnerable to flooding, but the fact of the matter is that a lot places in the U.S. could be hit hard by heavy rainfall or major storms, according to a report from the Towanda Daily Review. That’s certainly the case in Pennsylvania, where redrawn flood maps may put many residents in a position where they have to buy specific insurance.

    “We need only be reminded of Tropical Storm Lee and Hurricane Irene and how many local waterways overflowed their banks and damaged property to know about the importance of flood prevention,” Rep. Tina Pickett, a Republican representing Bradford, Sullivan, and Susquehanna counties, told the newspaper. “With this year’s late winter snowfall and coming seasonal rains, we may again be headed for a wet spring. That’s why homeowners should take a look at their properties and determine if flood insurance or additional prevention measures would help.”

    How vulnerable is it?
    From 2006 through the end of last year, Pennsylvania was pelted with a number of major flooding incidents, which affected 66 of the Keystone State’s 67 counties, the report said. That led to some 18,000 flood insurance claims being filed statewide, with payments of more than $551 million.

    The more insurance agents can do to help their clients better understand the ins and outs of their home coverage, including why policies cost what they do, the better off both sides of the equation are likely to be. That’s because consumers generally tend to feel good about their situations – even if their coverage is a little more expensive than they might like – when they have a solid knowledge of their what they’re paying for and why. That, in turn, is likely to improve relationships with agents, and potentially boost both satisfaction ratings and client retention rates.