With storm Freya the latest weather system to batter the UK and further unsettled weather on the horizon, MoneySuperMarket takes a look at the areas that have previously been impacted most by flooding and reveals which are the worst.
According to the analysis of 1.25m home insurance quotes in 2018, 7.5% of houses in Hull have flooded previously – well above the national average of 0.7%. The city, 90% of which sits below the high tide line, has seen particularly high instances of water damage in its western region, where 22.5% of homes have been flooded.
Carlisle (3.5%) and Lancaster (2.7%) are the next most flood-prone cities, followed by Gloucester and Llandudno (both 1.9%). Crewe remains one of the least-likely areas of the UK to flood, with just 0.1% of homes affected by water damage previously. With the exception of Hull and Llandudno, the top 10 locations all saw an increase in the percentage of homes that had flooded previously between 2017 and 2018. This can be attributed partly to 2018’s ‘Beast from the East’, which brought 21cm of snow, compared to only 8cm in February 20174.
Additional data shows that home insurance premiums increase by 18.5% on average following a claim. Despite this, many Brits aren’t aware that failing to take some basic precautions to maintain and protect their home could impact any home insurance claim. Only a third (34%) of Brits are aware that by not insulating their plumbing, they may not be entitled to a full pay out in the event of water damage. Brits largely also don’t realise that failing to turn off water to outside taps (29%), not clearing excess snow and ice from guttering and drains (26%) and failing to maximise loft and wall insulation (17%) can be taken into consideration by your insurer in the event of a claim.
Tom Flack, Editor-in-Chief at MoneySuperMarket said, “Our data shows that home insurance premiums jump by almost a fifth after a claim, meaning that the extreme weather forecast for this week could end up costing Brits a lot of money. As well as taking basic steps to protect and maintain your home against the elements, if you do live in an area prone to flooding, it’s important to consider what you can do to minimise the risk of damage to your possessions.
“Claims can also impact your insurance in the long term, as it’s likely insurers will increase premiums in proven high risk areas. So taking precautions to avoid a claim will not only help keep a lid on your premium, but should also give you cheaper options next time you shop around to renew your policy.”
MoneySuperMarket’s top tips to keep your home safe in the event of a storm include:
1: Get advanced warnings: The Environment Agency sends free flood warnings to you directly by phone, text or email.
2: Prevention is better than cure: Flood resistant doors and windows mean that there’s less chance of water entering your house. Block air bricks and other places where water might get in to your property.
3: Protect your possessions: If flooding is looking likely, take any valuables upstairs as soon as possible and turn off your gas, electricity and water supplies. Don’t enter standing water if your electricity supply is on, and don’t drink tap water until you’re given the all-clear by the authorities.
4: Keep your insurance policy to hand and take pictures: Contact your insurer as soon as possible and tell them your home has been flooded. Take pictures of any damage to your home and its contents, as this could provide support for an insurance claim.