With as wet a twelve months as we’ve had you need to be sure about your insurance cover & flood risk.

Most people don’t read that small print, dont think about the “what ifs” or potential risks especially with house buying and house moving. Insurance and legal documents are not the most riveting of reads, but for us legal professionals they are like best sellers, but we like to share some of that with you too.

When it comes to flood risk & insurance there is a current agreement known as The Statement of Principles between the ABI insurers and Government which is in fact due due to expire in June of 2013. But what does that mean for you? well, historically this has meant that insurance premiums for at risk properties have been subsidised by properties which are not at risk. Although it is believed that the Government continues to negotiate with the ABI the latest ministerial statement suggests that the present scheme may be replaced by a pool levy which would continue to subsidise the premiums for properties in areas of flood.

The existing system never covered larger commercial properties or properties built after 2009 and anecdotal evidence suggests that it is not unusual for very substantial premiums in excess of £10,000 to be paid in such cases.

What Can Be Done?

An existing desk top Environmental Search before a property purchase will reveal whether or not a property is at risk from flooding. Further detailed information can be obtained from a specific flood search (costs vary as to whether it is a residential or commercial property) which may provide further information.

At the moment therefore the position relating to most commercial and recently constructed properties remains uncertain and although a failure by the Government to agree further arrangements with the ABI is possible politically it is unlikely to be thought acceptable to render significant areas of housing liable for the full costs of insurance even if it is available.

Want to know more about searches, cover & house moving? then chat to our conveyancing team on 01264 363354