What Should My Flood Insurance Cover?

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It’s difficult to know just what might happen to your home should you be hit by a flood, especially if you have no previous experience. Who can tell just how high the flood waters might rise, or how well your building might cope.

One thing for certain, it will pay to be prepared and organised in order to keep the damage to a minimum. Look into flood defences, such as flood barrier doors, water tight windows with flood seals, and sandbags or one of the more high tech variations, such as FloodSax.


For any disaster to hit your home, there may well be things of sentimental value that are simply irreplaceable. If you are lucky enough to have fair warning of a forthcoming flood, you could use some of the time to take valuable items – photos, books, papers, clothing – away from the ground level to a higher floor, hopefully out of reach of any flood water.

It will also pay for you to have checked with your insurers as to whether they will cover flood damage, and if so, what exactly will they cover, and indeed how much will your flood insurance excess be.

The typical claim for a house that has suffered during a flood is about £18,000, with expenditure on all sorts of items, from legal fees to replacing carpets and flooring.

It is impossible to say exactly what an individual insurance policy should cover – they vary greatly, depending on the price, provider and the building they are insuring. But what we can tell you are some of the costs you will have to suffer should your home be hit by a flood and therefore, some of the things that should be covered by an flood insurance policy worth its salt.

Typically after a flood, a home owner will need to pay for the drying out of the property. This can take a long time, and it might also be required to pay for temporary accommodation, such as a hotel or bed and breakfast. Sometimes it can take weeks or even months for the property to dry out enough to become habitable again.

Next there will be the costs of removing any debris and possibly decontamination, should raw sewage have entered the property during the flood (this, sadly, is quite common during flooding).

Next will come the repair costs. This may include architects, surveyors and even lawyers, as well as builders.

Other expenses will include replacement of house contents, such as furniture carpets and curtains, and even a fitted kitchen.

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