Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Insuring homes at risk from flooding

Following on from the recent severe flooding in the Lake District, there was an interesting article in Monday 23rd November 09's edition of The Independent.

Entitled "In need of cover insuring homes at risk" by Lewis Smith, it said that more than half a million homes have been built in areas regarded as being at serious risk of flooding and up to a million more could be constructed by 2020.

On the jml insurance website we have been publishing reports for the last couple of years including contributions from the ABI, The Association of British Insurers.

The article said Finding out if your property is one of them is a comparatively simple matter, but getting them insured can be problematic.

Flood risk maps have been produced by the Environment Agency and householders can check their risk level on their website.

Insurance companies have access to the Environment Agency's mapping, but have also carried out their own studies to assess risks.

You will normally find in an insurance proposal form a question as to whether the property is located in an area that is a risk of flooding. Properties built in areas where there is a high risk of flooding may be impossible to insure, at least at an affordable rate.

The Government has agreed a deal with the insurance companies whereby they have pledged that most high risk properties with existing policies will continue to be covered. However the premiums and excess rate could still rise considerably and the insurance companies are under no obligation tp offer policies to new customers. This of course can make some properties unsellable. Another problem area will be getting payouts because it can sometimes take years for the payment to be made.

Properties that are considered to be uninsurable can be modified to make policies more affordable or bring down the excess. The following are some examples.

  • Raising the height of the electrics
  • Replacing chipwood doors with melamine
  • Installing concrete floors instead of wooden flooring
  • Using flood resistant plaster

If you are looking for Flood damaged property Insurance Click Here

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