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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent Daniel Walker

UPDATED: Apr 13, 2022

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The Lowdown

  • Flood Zone X is an area designated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that indicates a low-to-moderate risk of flooding
  • Flood Zone X is not considered a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), which means that homeowners with federally backed mortgages are not required to buy flood insurance
  • If homeowners in flood Zone X want to buy flood insurance, they may be able to find a policy for as low as $200-$400 per year

Buying a home can be stressful, but add the worry of having your home flooding in the future, and you may become a little overwhelmed. However, flood zones are mapped out across the United States to make homeowners aware of the risk and help them find ways to protect their homes if there is a flood.

Flood Zone X is one of many flood zones, but understanding what flood Zone X means for your home can be confusing. Keep reading below to learn what flood Zone X means, whether you are required to have flood insurance, and how much flood insurance may cost.

What is flood Zone X?

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is responsible for designating flood zones based on the estimated flood water levels each year. 

Flood Zone X is considered at low-to-moderate risk for flooding since the elevation is higher than estimated flood levels. However, some areas in flood Zone X may have characteristics that can cause some flooding, such as poor drainage. 

Therefore, flood Zone X is typically divided into shaded and unshaded portions. Shaded Zone X has a 0.2%-1% chance of flooding, while unshaded Zone X has a less than 0.2% chance of flooding each year.

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Does flood Zone X require flood insurance?

Does FEMA Zone X require flood insurance? According to FEMA, flood Zone X is not designated as a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA). Therefore, homeowners who have a federally backed mortgage are not required to buy flood insurance.

However, flooding can still occur in these areas, and it may be helpful for some homeowners to consider buying flood insurance for peace of mind. 

According to FEMA, approximately 40% of National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) claims between 2014 and 2018 were filed by homeowners outside of high-risk flood areas.

If you think your homeowners insurance will cover flood damage, double-check. In most cases, homeowners insurance will not cover flood damage. However, you may be able to add a flood endorsement to your policy for a higher rate.

How much is flood insurance?

Because flood Zone X is not a high-risk area for flooding, flood Zone X insurance rates are likely lower than insurance for other flood zones. 

Below are some average annual rates for NFIP flood insurance by state:

Average Annual NFIP Rates by State

StateAverage Annual NFIP Rates by State
New Hampshire$1,075
New Jersey$949
New Mexico$928
New York$1,242
North Carolina$733
North Dakota$766
Rhode Island$1,416
South Carolina$679
South Dakota$1,034
Washington, D.C.$817
West Virginia$1,292
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The average cost for an NFIP flood insurance policy is around $700 per year, while private insurance may be as low as $427 per year for low-risk areas. With that being said, residents in flood Zone X may be able to get flood insurance rates as low as $200-$400 per year.

If you choose to buy an NFIP policy, the average rate per $100 of dwelling in flood Zone X is $1.25, while the average rate per $100 of personal property in flood zone X is $1.93.

NFIP vs. Private Flood Insurance: Which is better?

The main difference between NFIP and private flood insurance is the coverage limits. NFIP insurance will cover up to $250,000 in replacement costs for your dwelling. However, a private flood insurance policy may be able to provide policies up to $1 million in dwelling coverage.

In addition, while NFIP provides replacement cost for your primary dwelling, all other structures and personal property are covered at actual cash value, which means you will be paid less if your property is damaged or destroyed. The maximum NFIP personal property coverage is $100,000.

Private flood insurance companies give the option of having replacement cost value coverage for all of your property. Plus, you may be able to add other coverage options to your policy, such as:

  • Additional living expenses to cover expenses if you cannot stay in your home after a loss
  • Additional coverage for secondary structures, such as sheds
  • Business income coverage

Aside from coverage options, NFIP and private insurance companies also differ in waiting times. For example, except when flood insurance is needed to close on a loan, NFIP policies must wait 30 days to go into effect. On the other hand, private insurance policies have a maximum waiting period of 15 days and may go into effect immediately.

You may also consider how FEMA regulations and federal regulations affect NFIP insurance policies.

While homes in flood Zone X are not as risky as homes in other flood zones, they are still at a higher risk than homes in other areas. Therefore, flood Zone X homeowners should seriously consider buying flood insurance to protect their homes.