About half of the houses in the flood damaged town of Edgecumbe are insured but few claims have been made so far, the Insurance Council says.
More than 1600 people were evacuated from the town last week after a low brought heavy rain, causing Rangitāiki River to surge and break a stopbank.
Council chief executive Tim Grafton said about 70 percent of the Bay of Plenty town is likely to have flood damage and the Insurance Council understands about 10 houses are beyond repair.
Mr Grafton said the number of insurance claims were likely to increase as more people regained access to the town.
"We would expect the number of claims to shoot up," he said.
"And we would encourage people just to ring your insurer and say 'hey, I've had water through my house, this is my address' and the insurer will have all the details.
"And then you've lodged your claim and the process can start."
He said the Insurance Council would be meeting with claims managers and loss adjustors tomorrow to start working through assessments.
It is expected to bring up to 250mm of rain to the region in 48 hours.