Coverage for mudslides is usually not covered under one’s homeowners policy. It is important to be careful not to get “mudflow” and “mudslide” mixed up. Flood insurance will cover mudflow but not a mudslide. Sometimes it can become complicated to determine how much of a home was hit by a mudflow and/or a mudslide so having protection for both (getting flood insurance and mudslide insurance) is best to cover any gaps.
You may wonder why something like this isn’t covered by your regular home insurance. But in fact, there are a lot of events insurance doesn’t cover. Typical homeowners policies do not cover floods, earthquakes, mudslides, sinkholes, war or nuclear accidents.
In the case of mudslides, you may be covered if you have flood insurance. A policy may cover mudslide damage as long as the mud is carried by a river or stream of water. So, if a dam breaks and picks up a hillside and carries it into your home, you may be covered.
But a flood policy will not cover damage if a hillside becomes saturated as a result of rainfall and slowly begins to move. That’s considered earth movement.
Like earthquake insurance, the only people who buy this kind of insurance are those who are at a high risk of it happening. Unless the risk is spread out, insurance companies don’t want to touch this.
There are some products that cover landslides. But they are very expensive.
On a $500,000 house, the deductible for a landslide is $1,000. The premium is $2,500 a year. You might also be able to get mudslide insurance from a higher-end company, but again it will be very pricey.
If you live near (or on) a severe hillside, or if you live in a hilly area that has heavy rainfall or an area that has experienced a mudslide in the past, you might consider these expensive options.
Also, you can go to FloodSmart.gov, type in your address and get an estimate of your flood risk.
Get flood insurance if you’re worried about flood risk. The National Flood Insurance Program has preferred pricing for people who don’t fall within a flood zone. It may only be a couple of hundred dollars a year.
The experts estimate that if just six inches of water floods your house, it can cause more than $11,000 in damage. One foot of water could cause almost $19,000 in damage.
You may also want to talk to a soil engineer. They would be able to examine the ground and determine how stable it is. If you’re really worried about a mudslide, it might be time to move.
Call Top Insurance Associates at 425-513-6007 for a quote.