Britain is a particularly flood-prone country, with its relatively wet and windy climate, low-lying areas and many poorly planned homes built on floodplains.
Even so, latest research from the insurer Policy Expert shows that many people aren’t aware their homes are at risk and aren’t sure what to do in the event of a flood. Others are so affected by the weather that they would even consider leaving the country if the weather gets worse!
Thousands go unprepared for flooding
While 95% of householders say they would never buy a home if they knew it was on a floodplain, almost half (44%) don’t know if they actually live in an area at greater risk of flooding or not.
And almost one-in-five, 19%, wouldn’t know what steps to take to protect their property if flooding was imminent.
Only half understand that they should keep gutters, drains and downspouts clear. Another 46% don’t realise that re-wiring electrical sockets so that they’re at least 1.5m above floor level is a very good idea if you live in a higher-risk area.
But the vast majority, 85% know they should move important documents and furniture upstairs, which is something at least.
One solution… move!
While only a small minority 1.5% have gone to the length of moving because of flooding, one-in-five say they would actually consider emigrating if they knew the UK’s weather was set to get much worse.
There are plenty of relatively easy-to-implement things that can be done to protect a home from the ravages of flooding:
- Buy DIY flood-defence products – From air brick covers to sand bags, window guards and non-return valves, there are plenty of items you can buy to help protect your home.
- Be aware – You can be kept up-to-date by weather alerts and information specifically for where you live from the Environmental Agency (see their website for further information )
- Utilities – Turn off gas and electrics, as well as the water at the stopcock if you know a flood is about to strike.
- Move things upstairs – It may be common sense, but moving valuables upstairs, including items such as electrical goods and sofas and chairs will help reduce the impact of flooding.
- Move your car – Plenty of people in floods do all the right things, only to watch the car float by the house! Move it to higher ground if you can.
- Documents – Place all important documents in a waterproof bag in a safe place.
Dealing with your insurer
You must contact your insurer immediately if you’re flooded. Keep all receipts for any emergency repairs you’ve paid for, take pictures and make note of water levels. Also, don’t throw away damaged items if at all possible.
As an online insurer, Policy Expert help our customers to compare insurance products and find a policy that’s right for them. Customer care is at the heart of everything we do and we have a dedicated customer service team on hand by phone, email, twitter and instant chat. For more information, you can call our experts on 0330 0600 600 or visit www.policyexpert.co.uk/contact for more ways to reach us.
Published 8 February 2017