How Sump Pump Installations Can Affect Your Home Insurance

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Article Contents
Picture of By <span>Matthew Roberts</span>
By Matthew Roberts

Updated on March 21, 2024

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Picture of By <span>Matthew Roberts</span>
By Matthew Roberts

Updated March 21, 2024

Visit author page

4 minute read

Article Contents

In the face of Canada’s escalating flood risks, understanding and mitigating these dangers by installing and maintaining devices like sump pumps has never been more crucial. From insightful studies to actionable advice, we’ve got a wealth of information to help you stay dry and keep your home insurance premiums low. Here’s a quick rundown to keep you informed and prepared:

Quick Facts About Sump Pumps & Home Insurance

  • Sump Pump Failure Coverage: If your sump pump fails to prevent water-related damages, you will only be covered if you have a related endorsement on your home insurance policy, like water damage coverage or flood insurance. Most insurance companies don’t cover the replacement cost of your sump pump in case it fails. Make sure to contact your insurance provider to learn more about your coverage.
  • Assess Your Flood Risk: If you’re among the significant portion of Canadians living in flood-prone areas, it’s essential to tailor your insurance coverage accordingly, factoring in the potential for overland flooding and sewer backup.
  • Sump Pump Installations: A sump pump, especially one with a battery backup, isn’t just a piece of equipment. It’s your frontline defence against basement flooding. Investing in one could reduce damage and potentially lower your insurance premiums.
  • Insurance Incentives for Prevention: Some insurers offer discounts for homes equipped with flood prevention measures like sump pumps. It’s worth a conversation with your provider to see if you could save money while keeping your home safer.
  • Take Advantage of Subsidies: Many Ontario cities offer subsidies for sump pump installation, easing the financial burden of this crucial home improvement. Check if your municipality offers such a program and make the most of it.

Installing Sump Pumps Can Save You Money

  • Preventive Measure: Installing a sump pump with a battery backup is key to preventing basement flooding. This proactive measure reduces the likelihood of flood-related damage and demonstrates to insurers that you’re serious about mitigating risks.
  • Insurance Incentives: Some insurance companies offer incentives or discounts for homes equipped with sump pumps and backwater valves. These features are recognized as effective flood prevention measures that can lower the risk of making a claim.
  • Subsidies for Installation: Many municipalities subsidize homeowners’ installation of sump pumps, recognizing their importance in flood prevention. This can help offset the initial investment cost.

In summary, the strategic installation of sump pumps not only serves as a critical defence against flooding but also aligns with insurance practices and policies, potentially leading to lower premiums and less financial burden after unexpected weather events.

Pros of Having a Sump Pump (Infographic)

If you’re wondering about the advantages of having a sump pump in your home, view our infographic below to learn more.

The advantages of a sump pump

Ontario Cities that Subcidize Sump Pump Installation

Below is a detailed overview of subsidies for sump pump installations available in select Ontario municipalities, highlighting specific financial assistance opportunities.

MunicipalityProgram NameSubsidy Amount
for Sump Pump
Eligibility CriteriaMore Info
BrantfordBasement Flooding
Grant Program
Up to $1,800 for weeping
tile disconnection and
reconnection to a sump pump
– Residential property in
North-East Flood
Remediation Study Area
– Owner-occupied and
property taxes paid
HaltonEnhanced Basement
Flooding Prevention
Subsidy Program
Up to $5,000 for weeping
tile disconnection and
sump pump installation
– Owners within Halton
Region’s wastewater
services area
KingstonPreventative Plumbing
Up to $1,400 for new
sump pit and pump
– Single-family, semi-detached,
row-house, duplex, or triplex
in Kingston
– Utilities Kingston sewer
account in good standing
LondonBasement Flooding
Grant Program
Up to $2,475 – $3,125 for
sump pit and pump
– Flooding due to direct sewer
connection or surcharge
– Located in identified
basement flooding area
Niagara FallsWeeping Tile Removal
Assistance Program
Up to $4,000, including
sump pump installation
– Inspection required for
eligibility confirmation
OttawaResidential Protective
Plumbing Program
Up to $1,250 for sump
with battery backup
– Residential property built
before 2004/2012 for
storm/sanitary services
– City of Ottawa sewer
services user
St. CatharinesFlood Alleviation
Program (ALP)
Up to $3,500 for sump
pump installation,
among other works
– Residential property at
risk of sanitary backup
due to sewer surcharging
Thunder BayFlood Prevention
Up to $1,500 for sump
pump installation
– Single-family or duplex
– Uses City water supply
with an account in good
TorontoBasement Flooding
Protection Subsidy
Up to $1,750 for sump
pump installation
– Single-family, duplex,
or triplex property
in Toronto
– Existing properties only
WindsorBasement Flooding
Grant Program
Up to $1,750 for sump
pump installation and
floor drains
– Up to $1,750 for sump
pump installation and
floor drain disconnection

Understanding Basement Flood Risks in Canada

The University of Waterloo conducted a study in which they analyzed the risk of floods across Canada and their impact on the insurance market:

  • Canadian Population in Floodplains:
    • 9% live in the 100-year floodplain
    • 11% reside in the 200-year floodplain
  • Financial Impact:
    • $43,000: Average cost to fix a flooded basement in Canada
    • Home insurance premiums increased 20-25% from 2015-2019 due to flood damage.
  • Insurance Losses Over Time:
    • 1983-2008: Annual losses averaged $250-$450 million
  • 2009-2021: Losses jumped to an average of $1.96 billion per year
    • Over 50% of claims were for residential basement flooding.

The prevalence of Canadians living in flood-prone areas, combined with the high cost of remediation and the stark increase in insurance losses over recent years, underscores the vital importance of sump pumps and adequate flood insurance for homeowners.

Basement Flood Protection and Insurance Coverage

Knowing what’s in your coverage is key. Most coverages depend on your plan and your home insurance provider. According to the Insurance Bureau of Canada, a typical home insurance policy includes the following flood coverage:

Covered by InsuranceNot Covered/Optional Coverage
Sudden water damage from
indoor plumbing
Freezing of indoor plumbing without
preventative steps
Malfunction of appliances
(e.g., washers, dishwashers)
Damage from ice buildup on roofs
Water escape from a broken
water main
Backing up of sewers and drains
(optional coverage)
Interior water damage from
roof leaks
Overland flooding (optional
coverage available)
Storm surge or tidal waves
(typically not covered)

Key Advice from MyChoice

In response to the challenges posed by increased flooding risks across Canada, MyChoice emphasizes the importance of tailored insurance solutions and proactive property management. We understand that the right insurance coverage is not just about meeting basic needs. It’s about providing peace of mind in the face of climate change and rising flood events. Here are essential insurance-related tips to consider:

Consider Flood Risk When Choosing Coverage:

Given the increasing prevalence of flooding in Canada, MyChoice advises customers to closely evaluate their home’s flood risk based on location and consider adding specific flood protections, such as overland flood insurance and sewer backup coverage, to their policy.

Invest in Preventative Measures for Discounts:

Implementing flood prevention measures like sump pump installations and backwater valves not only reduces the risk of water damage but may also qualify homeowners for insurance discounts. MyChoice encourages exploring these options and discussing potential savings with insurance providers.

Stay Informed on Subsidy Programs:

MyChoice recommends staying informed about local subsidy programs that support the installation of flood mitigation devices. Taking advantage of these programs can significantly offset installation costs and enhance property protection against flooding.


In conclusion, the increasing threat of flooding in Canada underscores the necessity for homeowners to not only enhance their properties with preventive measures like sump pumps but also to ensure their insurance coverage is robust and reflective of their specific risks. MyChoice stands as a pivotal resource, empowering homeowners to navigate their insurance options wisely, capitalize on subsidy programs, and adopt proactive strategies for flood risk management, ultimately securing their peace of mind in an unpredictable climate.

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