New report launched on how to better protect property owners from flooding and reduce claims costs

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A new independent report has been launched today on how to better protect homes and businesses from the risk of flooding and recover more quickly if the worst happens, in a bid to reduce the cost of flood claims.

Led by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, the report, called The Property Flood Resilience Action Plan brings together Government and industry and establishes an action plan to ensure property owners are better equipped to prepare for flooding, and get back into homes and business sooner if it does.

The report explores the role of building regulations and certification, in encouraging use of flood resistant construction methods; how rigorous independent standards can provide confidence in flood products across the industry; and how insurers can further increase their support for property owners installing flood resistant measures, particularly at the repair stage.

In addition to the report, a one-stop-shop advice web portal, www.centre4resilience.org, has been established to make it easier for people to find the most relevant information on better protecting their properties against flooding.

Floods Minister Thérèse Coffey said: “The impact of flooding on people’s lives is not just financial, it can be emotionally devastating. This new action plan brings business and government together so it will be easier for people to take action to better protect themselves and their properties.”

Dr Peter Bonfield, the chief executive of the BRE Group and chair of the group who compiled the report, said: “The Action Plan will help to give people and businesses the means to reduce the chances of their lives and livelihoods being disrupted by flooding. This is about both stopping the floodwaters getting in, and speeding recovery when it does.

“This action plan goes hand in hand with other recent announcements, like the broader National Flood Resilience Review. Both help ensure the country is better prepared for future flood events.”

The chairman of Flood Re, Mark Hoban, said that flood re-insurance scheme welcomed the report which has also given its support to Flood Re.

“In our first six months, 53,000 homes have more affordable flood cover as a result of Flood Re. As the report acknowledges, we have a wider role of supporting a return to an open market. This involves working with national and devolved governments, their agencies, councils, insurers and householders to reduce the cost of flooding. As part of this, we are already committed to investigate how to incentivise householders to make their homes more resilient.

“We look forward to continuing our conversations with Defra and working with the department and insurers to inform householders about the financial benefit they gain from the operation of Flood Re.”

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Marek Handzel

Marek Handzel is the editor of Claims Magazine. Marek welcomes articles, letters, or feedback from readers and can be reached by emailing marek.handzel@barkerbrooks.co.uk