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Flood Coverage, Claims and Cleanup: Frequently Asked Questions

After a flood, you may have questions about what insurance covers, your flood insurance claim and even the cleanup process.

Pulling up carpet padding in home.

Take a look at these frequently asked questions, and reach out to your insurance agent if you need further assistance.

How do I file a flood claim?

If you have flood insurance through the federal government's National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), report your claim to your agent or insurer.

If you purchased an NFIP policy through an Allstate agency, please call 1-800-54-STORM to start the claim process.

Can I file a claim on my homeowners insurance for hurricane damage?

Most homeowners insurance policies do not cover damage from floods. See information about flood insurance policies below.

However, some homeowners policies may help cover wind damage. So, if your roof was damaged by wind, for example, you may be able to make a claim to help get it repaired. Check with your home insurance agent to see whether wind damage is covered by your policy.

What if my roof was damaged and my house flooded? Where do I file a claim?

If your roof is damaged and your house was flooded, file a claim on your homeowners insurance policy and on your NFIP flood insurance policy. Each claim will be assigned a separate adjuster.

My car was damaged by flooding. Can I file a claim?

If you purchased comprehensive coverage on your car insurance policy, it may help pay to repair or replace your vehicle after a flood. Contact your auto insurer to file a claim.

Flood Insurance Coverage

What does my flood insurance policy cover?

An NFIP policy may help pay to repair your home after flood damage. It may also help pay to replace your personal property inside your home, such as furniture, electronics and clothing. For more information on what flood insurance does (and doesn't cover) visit Flood Insurance 101.

Does flood insurance cover temporary housing?

No. Flood insurance does not help pay for additional living expenses, such as temporary housing, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Does flood insurance cover debris removal?

Flood insurance may help pay to remove debris in, on or of the insured home, according to FEMA. However, it does not cover general clean-up of the home's yard or property. Flood insurance also does not cover damage to plants or landscaping, according to FEMA.

Does flood insurance cover spoiled food?

The contents coverage in an NFIP policy may help pay to replace spoiled food only if flood waters get into the refrigerator or freezer and damage the food. Flood insurance does not cover food spoilage due to a power outage.

Flood Cleanup & Your Claim

Do I have to wait for the claim adjuster to inspect my property before I start making repairs?

Do not begin reconstruction of your home. The claim adjuster needs to see and inspect the damaged property in its entirety in order to write a complete estimate. After floodwaters recede, you may need to inspect your home and take measures to prevent further damage. If you need to make to make emergency repairs to help mitigate damage before your adjuster comes, take photos first and keep all receipts.

A lot of my stuff is soaked and ruined. Do I have to keep it until the adjuster comes out?

It's a good idea to save your flood-damaged personal property for the adjuster to inspect. Separate damaged items from undamaged items. Keep an inventory — take photos and make a list of the damaged items.

If possible, store flood-damaged property outside in an area where it does not interfere with your daily activities. If it's not possible to safely maintain flood-damaged items, make sure they are well documented on your inventory.

My carpet and padding is soaked. Should I pull it up before the adjuster comes?

If you have to pull up carpet before the adjuster comes, save a piece of carpet and a piece of padding — at least 2 feet by 2 feet each — for the adjuster to inspect.

Flood Claim Process

Do I need receipts to file a claim for damaged personal property?

No, but it is helpful to have receipts. For damaged property, your adjuster will need an item's age and its approximate cost. If a television was damaged, for example, you may want to include notes on its brand and where you purchased it (that's where receipts come in handy).

What information do I need to have ready for the claim adjuster?

Separate damaged property from undamaged property. Keep a list of the damaged items, and include the ages of the items and the approximate cost of each.

After the adjuster comes out, how long will if take before I get a check?

Here are the general steps that take place after the adjuster inspects your property.

  1. The adjuster will complete a flood damage estimate.
  2. A file examiner will review the estimate for proper coverages.
  3. A proof of loss document will be mailed to you to sign and return. The proof of loss document is the amount of money you are requesting for your flood insurance claim.
  4. Upon receipt of the signed proof of loss document, the insurer will process your claim payment request and mail payment (via U.S. Mail) within 5 to 10 business days.

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