Flood Insurance Basics

 

A flood is not always defined as a wall of water rushing towards your property and taking all your belongings into the river to merge with the other belongings of your neighbours. Even a single inch of excess water is enough to cause costly damage to your home and to your belongings.

A flood is something that may happen in the middle of the night while you are sleeping or when you are out of town for a holiday. It is something that may come in at your most unexpected moment, and you are helpless when it comes. This is why you need to get a flood insurance, which is a specific insurance policy that protects your property against damage caused by flood.

People who live in an area which is high risk for flooding should definitely consider getting a flood damage insurance. Insurance providers which offer cover policies against flood damage have their own means and use topographical maps to assess the location of your home and see how high the risk is for flood damage is. Because of this, many insurance providers may even refuse flood damage insurance to customers who are at high risk.

Getting insurance for flood cover is just one of the insurance policies available in the market today. People get health insurance, auto insurance, fire insurance, travel insurance, and others but flood insurance is very necessary especially if you live in a flood risk area.

You may not be aware of this but losses and damages due to floods are 30 times more likely to occur than fire losses and this is especially true if your house is located in a flood zone. If you value your home and its contents which you have spent so much to acquire, then think twice and do not scrimp on a few hundred dollars a year to get a flood insurance policy. Do not wait until it is too late. You may also find it pays to get a policy cover for your house building and the contents as well.

 

Floods are caused by several factors. Urbanization, for example is one of the movements of men that results to flooding. As more and more concrete roads and parking lots are constructed to replace the natural land, the ability of natural lands to absorb water is decreased.

The changing weather pattern is another factor that has made the occurrence of floods more severe and frequent. When there is a mudflow, tidal waters overflowing or when the land along the shore of a lake collapses, flooding is not a remote possibility.

Flood insurance offers customers many benefits in the UK but due to constant flooding, the flood insurance premiums have gone much higher in the UK than they usually do. It is wise to have a flood insurance policy because when the need arises, your flood insurance policy will compensate for the loss or damage of all the items you have declared and you can get your flood insurance claim in no time at all to help you recover.

 

Flood Insurance Providers in the UK

There are many flood insurance providers all over the United Kingdom, and all a client will do is to look for a particular provider which will suit his or her needs. Look and compare the features of all the flood insurance providers to see which fits you best. Below are some of the insurance providers in the UK.

Endsleigh Home Insurance 
Endsleigh offer very competitive home insurance from which you can choose between buildings policy only, contents policy only or buildings and contents. Endsleigh also offers a policy for students on campus and a tenant’s policy for possessions insurance in shared accommodation. You can even insure items that are far from your home. Endsleigh Home Insurance offers a 24 free emergency help line and free legal expenses of £25,000. Endsleigh Home Insurance can be contacted at telephone number 0800 028 3571.

Norwich Union Home Insurance 
Norwich Union is a big insurer who offers optional categories. Clients can choose to get insurance policy which covers buildings only, contents only or buildings and contents. These include standard accidental damage, personal belongings, extra accidental damage and legal expenses. For details or quotes please, you may contact Norwich Union Home Insurance at telephone number 0800 092 9561.

Direct Line Home Insurance 
Direct Line Home Insurance offers four options to a Direct Line policy. Clients can have any of a combination of buildings, contents, possessions and legal protection coverage. Direct Line also offers home response service for an emergency breakdown in a client’s home. For details or quotes, you can contact Direct Line Home Insurance at telephone number 0870 901 1122.

There are many flood insurance providers in the U.K. They may differ in the insurance policy they offer to their clients, but they have many similarities in their policy coverage. The basic insurance types include the contents cover on a replacement or “new for old basis” against calamities like fire, theft, storm and flood damage. This policy includes household items, computer systems, cash up to a certain amount, freezer contents, lock replacements, contents of your garden, accidental damage to all the items in your home, and others.

The Buildings Insurance cover the structure of your home and walls, gates, fences, footpaths, outbuildings like sheds or garages, permanent fixtures including kitchen units and bathroom cabinets against calamities like landslip, fire, theft, storm and flood.

Other insurance providers in the UK also cover student possessions for students living on campus or away from home. This could cover personal contents and belongings in a student’s room, Hi-Fi equipment like photographic equipment; video cameras, camcorders, DVD players, jewellery, watches and other valuables, records, computer equipment, and others.

There are hundreds of insurance providers in the market. As a client, you can ask quotes and rates from the flood insurance providers in your area. They offer different features and special discounts. It is up to you to look for the insurance providers that best answer your insurance needs and who can give you the best deals.

Reducing Your Flood Insurance Premium

How much of your property is covered by your insurance policy? Have you limited the cover of some contents of your house to cut the cost of your insurance premium? Only when emergencies arise like flooding and you find all your precious possessions float away or get damaged right before your eyes, and you get an amount that is not enough to cover all your losses or have your house rebuilt , you will realize that cutting costs is not a good idea after all.

However, there are hundreds of ways to reduce your flood insurance premium. The rule is not to tie yourself to the very first flood insurance provider that comes your way. There are so many insurance companies in the United Kingdom that you can choose from. Take the time out to get as many quotes as possible so you can compare their features and get a cheaper premium.

The next thing you can do is to come up with necessary measures to secure your home. Floods can not be prevented but you can do something to reduce the risk of damage to your home and the contents. You can not relax and leave everything to your flood insurance provider, most especially if your house is located in a flood zone area.

When you have made measures to secure your home and property, your flood insurance provider will see that you have made preventive measures and see you as a better risk. Then they may lower the flood insurance premium quotes. Look out for special offers and bonuses some insurance providers will be offering to their clients from time to time. Some insurance providers may even offer discounts on certain policies and this is something you also have to keep an eye on.

If the house and the contents you acquired are under mortgage, chances are your mortgage lender may provide the flood insurance for your property for them to feel safe that their investment is protected but you still have a choice to shop around for a flood insurance provider who can give you the best deal.

If you make your own choice, the mortgage lender may also have to check and approve the flood insurance policy you chose. They may check the policy details to see that your property is in good cover when emergencies arise.

Again, take time to browse and shop around for several quotations before you make your decision. You can navigate through the web for all the flood insurance providers in your area. If you have sifted through your search, make a call and get additional information.

If you have several quotations already and you still have not decided on one who offers the most reasonable flood insurance premium and can satisfy your needs, you may also consider paying a higher excess. This can be a cheap way to get an excellent policy, but at a reduced price. Paying a larger excess, in the event of a flood emergency is a small price to pay when you consider the sums involved in recovering the total value of your property and possessions.

Thing To Consider When Taking Flood Zone Insurance

Shopping for a flood zone insurance provider is a very important decision you have to make to protect your home and your contents, so spend enough time to acquaint yourself with the policies of the insurance providers before you make a choice.

There are so many insurance companies for you to choose from and it is very vital that you put your trust on an insurance company that has a good reputation, a solid history and proper accreditation in the insurance industry. Do not make decisions with your eyes closed and put your trust on a company that is not reliable.

If you do your research for flood insurance companies through the internet, do not rely on everything and base your decisions from what you got there. Check and make sure the insurance company you chose has a sales staff and a call center who will address your concerns.

Using the internet provides you with a wide field to pick out your insurance provider. Some insurance companies may even have a chat feature where you can ask questions and get answers right away instead of waiting for replies through your email. This is important because you may be filling up forms and insurance quotes online or you need clarifications on the insurance policy so you need to talk to somebody right away.

You should also read the content of the website the insurance policy provides. See the range of their products and if these are functional. Another thing is to make sure that you can process payments online on a 24/7 basis. This is important because if this feature is absent, you may find yourself going out of your way just to drop your payments and this is a waste of time on your part.

When you fill out online forms and quotations, fill out all the necessary information needed because this could help you save a large amount from your quotation. You must also look out for special promotional offers like money back guarantee plans, first month free insurance and others because when your flood insurance providers offer something like this, this means they are sure of their services.

Flood insurance companies who can give you cover for your homes and properties abound in the UK. You only have to find the best sites with inexpensive rates and those who can meet your insurance needs for a flood insurance coverage.

Your insurance company may provide any of the two main types of cover which is the old-for-new category where your possessions will be replaced at their current market value when lost or destroyed by a flood, and the indemnity over where your insurance provider will consider the general depreciation of your things. If you look at it, you may consider the old-for-new policy as the better option but again it is all up to you. Remember experience is a hard teacher. It gives the test first and the lesson after. You house and contents are valuable so make the right decision.

Compiling A Property Inventory

When you plan to get a flood insurance policy to cover the contents of your home, you can not just walk in and announce your wish. The insurance company would require you to have a detailed list and thorough inventory of all the things and contents you want cover.

Compiling an inventory would not only enable you to have an idea how much you need to insure your contents for, but it will help you get the most of your UK flood zone insurance policy. This will also save you a lot of money to have somebody else do the inventory for you, and your flood insurance claims will be settled with greater speed.

So how is an inventory made? If you buy a new home or has just moved into a new one, it is better if you start to make an inventory right away and not wait until things pile and accumulate through the years. You may find yourself spending more time buried amidst a clutter of things you did not even know you have.

To start the inventory, you need to make a systematic plan where or in what room to start. Make a list of all the rooms in your house. For example you may start in the living room, moving on to the bedrooms, the kitchen, the garage, the attic, the basement, balcony, closets, and all the other rooms. Make a systematic method that is also convenient for you.

When you start on the first room, all you have to do is to make a list of every item and write a short description for each. You should include the serial number and the year model or date of the item as well as an estimation of the cost based on the present day prices.

This should be easy for you once you get the formula for estimating the value of contents in your property. You can get the original cost of an object based on the present market price. Then estimate its lifespan and how long you have had it, how long you expect to have that item around and you can get an almost accurate estimate to get the right content insurance. You can do this with all the other items in your house.

If you have valuable items like artworks, paintings, antiques and other valuables you will probably need the services of an expert. It is important to tell your flood insurance provider as much information as possible, whether you buy more items or sell anything for them to adjust your inventory.

Updating your insurance provider about your inventory would assure you that in case of emergencies or calamities, your contents are properly covered. One final advice, be sure to keep your inventory lists, receipts and other important documents which may be necessary when you make a flood insurance claim in a safe place. This could be a factor to speed up or delay getting your insurance claims when you need to.

One final tip – take pictures of everything you own and store them in a safe place. Having pictures will help you prove ownership and also remind you that you possessed the item in the first place! It’s easy to sometime forget what you have!

Disadvantages In A Flood Risk Area

When your house is located in a flood zone area, you have to suffer all the consequences that come with it. Floods may come any time, and you have to be always be prepared for it. One hitch for living in a flood zone is it will affect your flood zone insurance premium.

Insurance companies are becoming hesitant to give insurance policies to houses located on flood risk areas because it can not have escaped every one’s attention that parts of the United Kingdom were severely devastated by floods in 2006 and 2007. This will affect insurance providers too because if everybody suddenly files for a flood insurance claim, either they will have to raise all the insurance premiums or they will close shop before the year ends.

With this, flood insurance providers are appealing to the government to focus their attention in increasing flood defenses especially in the areas worst hit by the recent floods. Most of the standard home insurance policy providers in the UK very rarely include flood damage cover. This is why you have to ensure your homes and your house contents with flood insurance policy.

Faced with millions of pounds worth of flood damage insurance claims due to the recent severe flooding in the UK, do not be surprised if your insurance provider will refuse to renew your current policy when it expires. This is particularly true if you have been a victim of the floods or your house is located in the flood zone.

Insurance firms have a business to run and if you pose as a high risk customer, you can not blame them and they are not obliged to renew your flood insurance policy even though you are an existing policy holder of their company.

If you are lucky your flood insurance provider may renew your policy but even then, do not be surprised if you will be asked to pay a much higher premium since you live in an area hit by the recent flooding. This is one of the disadvantages of living in a flood zone. Even if you want your home and properties covered by flood insurance, the providers will not be welcoming you with open arms.

If you have been a victim of the recent flooding in the UK, and have seen your hard-earned properties and possessions get destroyed before your eyes, calling the flood insurance companies to get a cover policy may not be the wisest move. Your chance of getting one is very remote as the insurance companies are still suffering from the sting of the countless flood damage claims filed before their offices.

There is even the possibility that many of the existing insurance companies may remove flood insurance cover from their standard insurance policies unless the government will do something, like focus on this problem and increases its budget for flood defense. If this happens and the government will not make a move, those living in the flood zone or those considered as high risk areas will suffer.

Is Your Home Adequately Covered?

You have been regularly paying your flood insurance policy premiums and you are at ease with the knowledge that in case of emergencies like flooding, you have cover for your house and the contents. But are your home and contents properly insured? Relaxing in the thought that you have flood insurance coverage, are you safe from the possibility that you may have underestimated the true value of your property? Can you sleep well at nights assured that you have upgraded your policy as you acquired or added more valuables to your original inventory?

Coping when disaster like a flood strikes is not a pleasant experience, but getting news that your house and house contents are under insured is a shocking thought indeed. This should create awareness in you as a flood insurance policy holder to check if you are adequately covered or you have the correct level of cover.

It is high time to check if your property is under adequate cover. If you live in a flood risk area or if your area is prone to subsidence, you should not keep it but inform your flood insurance provider because it may cause future problems when your insurer will refuse your flood damage claims.

Remember to update your buildings insurance policy if you have added home improvements at any time so that if you make a claim, it will be included. The same applies to contents cover. If you have purchased additional things or valuable goods, update your insurance cover.

Do you have a new-for-old cover? This means your flood insurance policy provider will pay out to replace the lost or damaged item. You should check your policy because some insurance providers have a time frame or limit about how long a specific item had been in your possession.

Another important thing on your checklist is to inform your flood insurance provider if you have any valuables like works of art, paintings or other expensive goods which you want to be included in your flood insurance policy. Do not hesitate to pay a higher premium or get a separate policy for expensive items. Calamities like floods may occur any time and you will not relish the thought of seeing your valuables without insurance damaged beyond repair.

If you are buying a house with a current owner, be sure to ask the owner about his flood insurance policies and who the insurance provider is to make sure there are no problems and you will still get appropriate cover for your house and contents. This would also to make sure you will not be the recipient of hand-me down problems with insurance policies.

You should also get advice from your flood insurance provider especially if you are living in a flood zone. Although your location may limit your house and contents insurance options, your flood insurance providers could offer plenty of advice for you. With this concerns addressed, you can sleep in your house at night without worrying about floods and other emergencies because you are adequately covered.

Preventive Measures Against Floods

The occurrence of floods is something that may come with and without warning, and there is nothing you can do to stop it. However you are not that helpless. There are preventive measures you can do to lessen or control the damage and to protect your homes from the fury of the flood. This should always be your pushing factor to purchase a flood insurance cover for your house building and for the contents of your home.

In case of floods, here are the most basic steps that you can do to minimize damage to your properties. You should pay attention to three of the most critical aspects of your house, and these are electricity, gas and water. First of all remember to turn off all the main switches and controls of these three in your house. For sure you know where these controls are ahead of time. Do not wait for the flood to come before you look for the controls.

Make sure you unplug all the electrical items in your house and if possible haul them on higher places, like the second storey of your house or the attic. If you live in a flood zone, you should already be aware of ideal things to cover your doors and windows like sandbags, metal sheeting and others. Make your safety your priority but if you still have time, you can move as much furniture and things to higher places.

You can also roll up carpets and rugs to avoid them getting sodden and destroying their texture. As much as possible keep everything dry above water. If your house is in a flood zone, you must have a sealed emergency bag containing personal items and valuables like important documents, personal records and other items with sentimental value to you which no amount of insurance claim could replace.

Before anything like a flood happens, you could install your own flood defences as an advanced preparation. Check your local stores for products that can be installed in advance, like a ‘flood board’, air brick cover, or even plastic skirts to surround your whole property.

When a flood occurs, think of your own safety above all. In the event that you have to vacate your property, cooperate with emergency services and try to do as much as you can while it is still daylight. Remember floods have claimed so many lives. Do not allow yourself to be included in the long list of flood victims.

It may help you to prepare in advance too. Check the flood warnings in your region so you will know what actions to take. As a final precaution, make a personal flood plan for you and your family.

Your flood plan should include a flood escape route, what you need to carry in emergency cases, where you can go and other concerns with focus on your safety. From time to time tune in to your radio and television for flood warnings. You can also phone Floodline on 0845 988 1188 for more information.

What To Do In Case Of Flood?

Floods can not be stopped or avoided, and if your home is located in a flood zone area, there is really nothing you can do expect to take measures to minimize the possible damage or destruction of your property. You can also expect that when your house is located in a flood zone area, it will increase your flood zone insurance premium.

Insurance providers charge higher premiums in high-risk areas, even as much as three times higher than for those policy holders whose houses are located in low-risk areas. If you do not want to move to another location, then you have to bear the high flood insurance premiums.

However, you are not that helpless. Insurance companies can also give you advice on how you can put up measures to obtain cover. It is very important for you to get adequate cover for your house buildings and the contents of your home. You have worked so hard to acquire your things and it is not that easy to lose them or see them damaged in a flood. Some objects may even be replaceable so of course you would not want to lose them.

Here are some advices for you to minimize damage when you receive a flood warning, but do this only if you have adequate time. Do not sacrifice your own safety because you only have one life to live and no matter how many life insurance cover policy you have, it can not restore your life. Things can be replaced but your life can not be replaced.

First of all, be sure that your flood insurance and other important documents are at hand. Also make sure you have the emergency line numbers ready because if things get worse, you can not possibly swim around your house looking for lost numbers and papers. If you have sandbags ready, you can protect the doors inside your house with them. You can also push furniture and other electrical items to higher parts of your house if you still have enough time to do so.

If water floods your house, do not by any means attempt to leave your house. It may be too dangerous and the current may sweep you away. You can move up to the higher floor of the house. If you live in a high risk area, you should have an emergency pack ready which contains some dry clothes, toiletry essentials, medicines, emergency phone numbers, torch, a flask with hot drinks and important documents.

When your home is flooded, do not waste a minute to turn off the main switch of the electricity. Think of your safety and do not use electrical sources of heat near the flood water. As soon as the flood water subsides, do not wade your way across the sodden floors and start redecorating. That is your least priority for the moment.

For more information about high risk areas, you can call National Flood Warning Centre at telephone number 01276 454 725, or visit www.environment-agency.gov.uk, and www.homecheck.co.uk.

What Your Flood Insurance Covers

If you are planning to get a flood insurance cover but do not have the time to go to the flood insurance providers in your area, you have one option and that is to apply online. The internet can help you choose a flood insurance policy provider who will fit your needs and you can fill in necessary forms online. This method however, may confuse you if you do not look at the fine prints for particular policies very closely. Here are a few tips when you apply for a flood insurance cover online.

Most of the insurance companies provide contents insurance policies against both man-made and natural calamities like theft and vandalism, fire, explosions, slippage, burst pipes, earthquakes, water or oil leakage, severe weather like storms, lightening, floods, and others. In all these emergencies, you need protection for your property or a replacement when damage or loss could not be avoided.

In the UK, flood insurance is available for you as a customer but you have to visit the insurance providers or browse through the internet to find one which is not only inexpensive but also meet your needs.

Two of the most commonly offered flood insurance policies in the UK are the buildings cover and home contents cover. The home contents insurance cover in the UK is designed to cover your personal belongings and almost everything you own. Home contents cover could include household goods and items, computer equipments, furniture and furnishings, kitchen equipment, video, audio equipments, and other personal belongings. These contents could be replaced or covered by your flood insurance policy when these are lost or damaged beyond repair due to floods.

Buildings insurance cover on the other hand protects the basic building or structure of your house or property. This means your flood insurance policy will cover the windows, floors, walls, outbuildings like garage and shed or permanent fixtures like kitchens, toilets and baths, interior decorations and even bedroom cupboards.

When you only get contents cover, only your personal belongings and valuables that you can take away from your house will be under the flood insurance policy. Buildings cover includes those fixtures that you can not remove from your house even when you move to a new location.

A buildings insurance will cover the loss or damage of the actual structure and fittings of your home in case of flood. It is therefore important that the buildings cover you get should be enough or more than enough to cover the rebuilding cost of your house. Your flood insurance policy provider usually estimates the rebuilding costs of your house and structures so you will know what level of flood insurance cover you need.

Your house and house contents face risks of damage from many calamities, flood included so you must realize by now how important a flood insurance policy is. Do not wait to be a victim of calamities like floods without a flood insurance cover. Spending a few hundred pounds for insurance could spell the difference in your life.