Winter and spring can be tricky seasons when it comes to protecting your home from flood damage. With this year’s heavy snowfall and cold temps, melting will likely cause problems for many Mainers. Plus, this spring and summer, we’re more than likely to see thunderstorms and downpours, which can lead to roof damage and flash flooding.
If you live in an at-risk area, there are steps you can take to minimize your risk for flood damage in your home. However, according to, “25% of all flood claims occur in the low-to-moderate risk areas.” When you couple snowmelt with heavy rains or backed up sewage systems, even low-to-moderate risk areas are likely to see water damage. Here are some basic steps you can take to help prevent losses from flood damage in your home:

• Review your flood insurance coverage with your insurance agent (flood insurance is required by law in Special Flood Hazard Areas, but is recommended for homes outside these areas as well).
• If you don’t have flood insurance, please note that there is a 30-day period after purchasing before it takes effect—do not wait until after a flooding issue occurs
• Make an itemized list of personal property
• Photograph your home inside and out—this will help settle claims for uninsured losses, which are tax-deductible
• If flood water enters your home, do not touch any electrical equipment unless it is in a dry area and you are standing on dry ground
• Turn off any affected electrical circuits if you have access to your panel
• If your items are damaged by flood water, immediately contact your agent

Your personal safety and the safety of your family is the most important consideration when there is a flood. Having an emergency plan in place to evacuate is strongly recommended, as floodwaters can rise very rapidly. If you need to evacuate, turn off the main breaker of your panel and close your main gas valve.
It may surprise you, but there are many non-coastal regions in Maine and New Hampshire that are at risk for flooding. In Maine alone, there are over 6,900 flood insurance policies in effect. If you’re unsure whether or not your property is at risk, give your United Insurance agent a call today. Remember that there is a 30-day waiting period after your purchase, so don’t wait until it’s too late to call.


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