Apartment

Condo/apartment complexes need a master flood policy

Do you know who will lose the most in the event of a flood? These are people who own condos or apartments outside the incorporated city limits. In general, self-employed owners can choose whether or not to purchase their own coverage.

If you live in one of these sets, be aware that your private insurance for your interior spaces does not include the effects of flooding. Also, imagine your worst scene scenario, which is the whole complex is flooded. It’s a very strong risk here on the ocean side of the county. Many of us don’t live in a FEMA floodplain mapped area, but 26% of all flooded homes are not in that floodplain. Even if you are in the floodplain, you need insurance because there is no government coverage if you don’t have insurance. So imagine there are 70 units in your complex and there is flooding. The homeowners association should assess each unit owner $50,000+ to restore the development. Most wouldn’t have that much money, would desert their unit, and it’s possible no one would restore the community – a loss for all.

Some condo boards have liability, loyalty, and directors/officers insurance are often standard coverage choices for condo owners. However, there is a big gap in your statutes which does not oblige the associations to look after the long-term interests of the owners.

For most of these communities, such long-term flood insurance can increase individual monthly appraisal costs by more than $100. Still, it surely beats the devastating costs of losing everything you have.

Organize a community meeting about it and come to an agreement. With climate change and what we already know about the low elevation of our property, now is the time to take active action.

Dr. Nancy Feichtl
Rehoboth Beach


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