It is estimated that approximately 1,800 homes across the North flooded in the recent bad weather causing both damage and evacuations, with professional services network PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) stating that this damage is expected to cost the industry a whopping £100m. Thankfully, the industry was well prepared and has responded as fast as possible to all those affected with most people affected covered for flood damage within their home insurance policy and some contents insurance also offering flood damage cover.
Where homes have been inhabitable as a result of the floods, insurance companies have been seeking alternative temporary accommodation with the cost of this being covered in individual policies. However, flood insurance has not been a given for all affected, with some policies not offering cover for flood damage. It is important to state to homeowners and renters that it is your responsibility to check your own policies to be assured that you are protected.
Will premiums increase?
Flood Re insurance service was introduced in 2016 to ensure that unaffordable premiums would be avoided. It acts as an insurer to the insurance companies so that the flood risk parts of a customer’s policy can be passed to them after exceeding a certain cost, which has in turn prevented gigantic premium from being offered to customers who live in flood risk areas or who have already experienced floods in the past.
Encouragingly for policyholders, the PwC do not expect to see dramatic increases to policyholders following this recent stint of bad weather. House insurance premiums have been at a loss in recent years to be able to offer competitive prices, which also means that policyholders who are not affected by floods can see an even better premium often remaining similar to the previous year.
What to do in event of a flood?
If you have been unfortunate enough to suffer damage due to floods, it is important that you keep damaged possessions and any repair receipts; this is so you can use these as evidence to your insurance company in process of a claim. Your insurance company should be aware of prevention tips that you can adopt that may speed up the restoration process. Always check this with your provider and do not redecorate straight away; this is because flood damage sinks further than you may be able to see at face value and some homes can take months to completely dry out.
How can I protect my home?
As mentioned above, your insurance company will have some maintenance tips to protect your home from further damage. The Government is also contributing to support those affected (including business). They will be offering up to £5,000 for flood defenses for affected homes and businesses. It can also be good practice to have up to date photos of your home so that you can compare them to the flood damage to support your insurance claims. If you live in an area that can be prone to floods, ensure that you shop around for the best insurance deal.