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Insurers urged to focus on future of flood aftermath

Insurance companies and loss adjustors are being urged by a property trading body to help flood victims, with measures to improve resistance and resilience during recovery process. 


17 DECEMBER 2015 | BY CINTIA CHEONG

A plumber filling bathroom tiles with waterproof adhesive or grout © Shutterstock
One of the measures to improve flood resilience is using tiles with waterproof adhesive and grout. © Shutterstock

The Property Care Association (PCA) argued it was “essential” for people to receive the right information about what steps they could take, to better protect their homes and businesses from being flooded again. 

These measures include keeping water out as far as possible, known as flood resistance, or reducing the impact of future floods, known as flood resilience. However, the PCA said professional advice remained “vitally important”.

The firm’s call follows the government’s plans to offer payments of up to £5,000 to help victims in areas hit by Storm Desmond to protect against future floods. 

Mary Dhonau, chair of the PCA’s Flood Protection Group, called on firms to “play a lead role” by ensuring policy holders are given advice on how the money should be spent to create the maximum impact.

Measures to improve resistance include replacing standard airbricks with “self-closing” alternatives; checking brickwork is in good condition and painted with a breathable water-resistant solution; and giving consideration to the fitting of a pump to evacuate water coming from beneath the building.

To improve resilience, the PCA suggested moving or locating items such as boilers and electric sockets high up on the wall; using ceramic or stone tiles with waterproof adhesive and grout; and replacing kitchens with one that can be cleaned, dried and reused, such as one made of marine ply or steel.

Dhonau said: “We need to ensure flood resistance and resilience measures are installed during the recovery work. This will provide better value for money for insurers in the future, and ultimately provide better outcomes for policy holders.” 

The grant of up to £5,000 to improve the protection of properties is part of a greater funding of £51m offered by the Treasury.