Almost everyone in Louisiana is underinsured for floods

Over 7,000 people and counting have been evacuated from their homes in southern Louisiana as rain continues to fall and water levels rise, causing historic flooding throughout the region.

Governor John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency as three people have drowned and the rain shows no signs of stopping anytime soon. That’s bad news for most of the people living in the area as Louisiana residents are woefully underinsured against flooding.

According to Insurance Business America, only 4% of the homes and businesses in the 11 most affected parishes have flood insurance protection. To put that in perspective, of the 1.34 million people in the area, only 58,000 are covered.

Across the whole state, 9% of Louisiana’s population have an in-force policy. Despite how low that sounds, it is actually third most covered state in the country after Florida and Texas.

Experts point to rising premiums for the falling number of in-force policies as well as the relatively small number of major flooding events in recent years. It’s easy for people to forget how suddenly their home can be destroyed. Make sure you have a home insurance policy with flood coverage if you live near rivers or other bodies of water.