Time Is Right To Reconsider Nationwide Disaster Insurance

As parts of Florida struggle to address recently drafted flood maps issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, we are reminded of the very real possibility that disaster could strike our area at any time. This week, the nation has seen its share of natural disasters, with tornadoes in the midwest and flooding in the southeast and the northeast.

When disaster strikes, it’s natural to think of the welfare of your loved ones first. But after the dust settles, many homeowners are hit with another strike: the financial stress of recovering from a natural disaster.

For years, we have advocated for a nationwide disaster insurance program. The idea has been batted around in Washington, D.C. for a generation, but has never gained traction. Today, the need has never been more prevalent. Although insurance is largely limited by location, natural disasters occur without regard for such boundaries. Whether you live in Hawaii and fear tsunamis and volcanoes, California and are faced with earthquakes and wildfires, the midwest with tornadoes, the north with blizzards (and occasionally hurricanes), or South Florida, which often suffers from a combination of wind and water disasters, you can’t escape the possibility that something terrible might one day happen to your home or business.

The problem is, the current homeowners’ insurance policy is made to be specific, largely to limit risk. Policies are riddled with lists of exclusions and specifications that could leave you uninsured when you need it most. For example, if your house is flooded in a hurricane, you are likely only covered if you also have flood insurance. Proponents of natural disaster insurance call for blanket coverage across the nation, meaning that whether you face fire, flood, tornado, earthquake or hurricane — or anything else that comes your way — you will have adequate coverage to salvage your home.

National disaster insurance would create a much wider pool for that risk by encompassing communities across the nation that will not likely face natural disasters every year, or at least at the same time, which would make it profitable for companies. Better yet, it’s not a hard idea to implement — the national flood insurance program already gives us the template.

The time to push for better solutions is now, before the storm, and not as people are trying to pick up the pieces of their lives and hope they can afford to put them back together.


  1. We do have a fund for natural disasters for which taxpayers pay. It’s called FEMA.

    “The agency’s primary purpose is to coordinate the response to a disaster that has occurred in the United States and that overwhelms the resources of local and state authorities. The governor of the state in which the disaster occurs must declare a state of emergency and formally request from the president that FEMA and the federal government respond to the disaster. FEMA also provides these services for territories of the United States, such as Puerto Rico.”

    And now, another government agency should to be formed with additional costs?!?!

    You can’t nationalized everything! Reform FEMA, do not add another entity to our already intricate web of government.

Comments are closed.