In April 2017, record flooding caused widespread damage in Carter County and much of southern Missouri.

In April 2017, record flooding caused widespread damage in Carter County and much of southern Missouri.

SEMA’s Floodplain Management Section administers the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for the state of Missouri. Standard homeowner’s insurance does not cover flooding, so it’s important to have protection from damage associated with flooding. The NFIP offers flood insurance to homeowners, renters and business owners if their community participates in the program, providing more than $4 billion in flood insurance coverage for Missouri homes and business annually.

The National Flood Insurance Program was created by Congress in 1968 to provide a means for property owners to protect themselves financially from flood events. The program is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The NFIP offers flood insurance to homeowners, renters and business owners if their community participates in the NFIP. Participating communities agree to adopt and enforce floodplain management ordinances that meet or exceed FEMA requirements.

How NFIP Insurance Policies Helped Missouri Homeowners in Historic 2017 Spring Flooding

  • $19 million was paid to policyholders before the federal disaster was declared (Flood insurance pays even when there is no disaster declaration.)
  • 26 percent of NFIP claims filed were NOT in a Special Flood Hazard Area.

Survivors of the April 28 – May 11 Flooding Disaster: You are eligible for federal assistance even if your community does not participate in the National Flood Insurance Program

Flood survivors in 35 Missouri counties designated in the federal disaster declaration for flooding from April 28 – May 11 may apply for FEMA Individual Assistance regardless of whether they live in a community that participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).

  • Individuals or households that live in a community that does not participate in the NFIP, and who are not located in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), may be eligible for all forms of FEMA assistance.
  • Individuals and households who live in a community that does not participate in the NFIP, and who are located in a Special Flood Hazard Area are eligible to receive assistance for:
    • Medical, dental, funeral and some other categories related to the flood;
    • Disaster housing, rental assistance, but not repairs;
    • Wells and septic tank repair or replacement.
  • Individuals or households that are located in the SFHA may not receive federal assistance for NFIP insurable, real and/or personal property unless the community in which the property is located is participating in the NFIP. 
  • Related: Missouri Community Status Book Report. NFIP participating and non-participating communities.

  • Survivors who live in a community that does not participate in the NFIP are unable to purchase flood insurance with the NFIP.
  • If a non-participating community joins the NFIP within six months of the disaster declaration, residents and property owners in the community who have registered with FEMA for disaster assistance will have their applications processed and may have eligibility for a wider range of assistance.
  • As a general requirement for a Small Business Administration (SBA) physical damage or personal property loan being approved, SBA will require flood insurance by the homeowners, business owners and renters for the life of the structure. Survivors are encouraged to apply to discuss their individual situation subject to SBA requirements.
  • To learn more about how a city, town, village, or unincorporated area of a county may join the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), contact Missouri Floodplain Manager/State NFIP Coordinator Karen McHugh, at (573) 526-9129 or email:Karen.McHugh@sema.dps.mo.gov.

What you should know about flood insurance

Flooded Homes
  • Homeowners are 85 percent more likely to use a flood insurance policy during the span of a 30-year mortgage rather than a homeowner’s policy.
  • More than 20 percent of NFIP claims are submitted by people who own property outside of high-risk areas.
  • If you live in an area with a high risk of flooding, you have a 25 percent chance of your home being flooded over a 30-year mortgage. In moderate- to low-risk zones, the chance of flooding is lower but still present.
    Source: National Flood Insurance Program figures for U.S.

Benefits of Flood Insurance Compared to Disaster Assistance

Flood Insurance

  • You are in control. Flood insurance claims are paid even when there is no federal disaster declaration.
  • There is no payback requirement.
  • Flood insurance policies are continuous, and are not non-renewed or canceled for repeat losses.
  • Flood insurance reimburses you for all covered building losses up to $250,000 for residential structures and up to $500,000 for non-residential structures. Contents
  • coverage is also available up to $100,000 for residential structures and up to $500,000 for non-residential structures.
  • In Missouri, the average premium for a flood insurance policy is about $1,000 annually. In moderate to low risk zones (preferred risk policies), annual premiums can be less than $200.

Disaster Assistance

  • Most forms of federal disaster assistance require a federal disaster declaration.
  • Federal disaster declarations are not awarded in all flooding events.
  • The most common form of assistance is a loan that must be repaid with interest.
  • The duration of a Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster home loan could extend to 30 years.
  • The average federal Individuals and Households Program assistance award for federal disaster declarations for flooding in 2008 was less than $4,000.

Missouri Communities that have recently enrolled in the NFIP

  • McCord Bend
  • Lake Tapawingo
  • Shoal Creek Drive
  • Browning
  • Bunceton

 

Find more NFIP information and resources on FEMA's National Flood Insurance Program website.

For people who live in a mapped high-risk Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), federal law compels federally backed mortgage lenders to require mortgagees to purchase flood insurance. SEMA Floodplain Management Section works with communities that participate in the NFIP to ensure compliance with program requirements.

SEMA also is a Cooperating Technical Partner (CTP) with FEMA in the production of Digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps (DFIRM) under the federal Risk Mapping, Assessment and Planning (Risk MAP) program. In addition, the section partners with the Missouri Floodplain and Stormwater Managers Association (MfSMA) and other professional organizations to offer NFIP training for local floodplain administrators, planners, insurance agents, elected officials, lenders, realtors, engineers and surveyors.