Homeowners urged to take steps to flood-proof their homes - 8 News NOW

Homeowners urged to take steps to flood-proof their homes

Posted: Updated:

LAS VEGAS - Monsoon season is underway in southern Nevada, but it's never too late to prepare for a possible flood.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has designated 1,700 local homes and businesses near Vegas Valley Drive and Nellis Boulevard as under a flood zone.

While this area is at a higher risk for flooding, FEMA officials say every resident throughout the valley should be prepared for floods.

Learn how to prepare your home for possible floods

The agency urges people to monitor weather conditions in and around the valley. Runoff from the mountains can take between two to three hours to reach valley neighborhoods.

It's also important to have a plan, especially if you have small children or an elderly person in your home.

FEMA officials say every household should have a safe meeting place in the event of an emergency. People should also have an emergency kit ready in the event flood water forces them from their home. The kit should include enough food, water and clothing to last at least three days.

Edie Lohmann with FEMA says a flood can happen anywhere at anytime.

“We are seeing flooding in areas that we haven't seen flooding before, and we've seen the severity of the flooding increase," she said.

One way to flood-proof your home is to clear debris around your home. This helps to prevent drains from clogging. You can also pick up free sandbags at two valley locations.

FEMA offers a flood insurance program, but only homeowners who live in a designated 100-year flood plain are required to get flood insurance. This is especially important for new homebuyers, because you won't be able to secure a home loan without insurance.

Flooding can occur outside of those flood plains, which is why anyone can get a policy.

Homeowners must go through a local insurance agent to obtain a policy which typically covers flood damage and property loss.

Allstate Insurance agent Mike Seifer says deductibles for a home valued between $200,000 and $300,000 amount to approximately five percent. Deductibles tend to be higher for homes in a flood zone.

If your home is not in a 100-year flood plain, Seifer says to use your best judgment about whether you need insurance.

“You’re going to see weather like this, and then we're going to get calls after the fact, because it's no different than an apartment complex fire that occurs, and four families are displaced,” he said. “The next day, neighbors are calling us saying, 'Hey, I may need renters insurance, because I don’t want that happening to me.' So, that same type of thing happens in a flood."

Flood insurance policies can take up to 30 days to take effect. That's why Seifer says it's important to plan ahead.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KLAS. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.