State and federal officials urge Missourians to strongly consider purchasing flood insurance; history shows that on average a flood-related disaster occurs nearly once a year in this state.

Depending on their level of coverage, flood insurance policy holders may receive up to $250,000 for home damage and up to $100,000 for contents – far more than FEMA’s assistance for individuals and households after a presidentially-declared disaster. There’s another advantage: flood insurance claims and payouts are not dependent on a disaster declaration. An insurance claim may be submitted any time a property is flooded.

Statistics underscore concerns about flooding. According to FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program, 90 percent of all presidentially-declared disasters involve flooding. Flood events also affect those living in areas thought relatively safe from flooding. People in areas of low- to moderate-risk file nearly 25 percent of all NFIP claims and receive one third of federal disaster assistance for flooding.

The average cost of a flood policy runs $700 a year but reducing flood risks or taking mitigation measures such as elevating a structure can lead, in some cases, to lower insurance costs. An insurance agent can provide more guidance on lowering costs.

The NFIP has received 1,668 claims and paid more than $47.5 million to Missouri policy holders after this year’s spring and summer flooding. Payments continue to be made on claims.

For a complete list of what is covered and not covered by flood insurance policies or for more information on the different types of policies available through the NFIP, visit or call your insurance agent. New flood insurance policies go into effect 30 days after purchase.

Follow recovery updates in Missouri on Twitter @MOSEMA_ and @FEMARegion7. For information on applying for an SBA loan, call 800-659-2955 or email SBA’s disaster customer service. If you are deaf or hard-of-hearing, call text relay at 800-877-8339.