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Home buildings and contents insurance premiums rise

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New data published this week has revealed that the cost of home buildings and contents cover has risen as a result of severe flooding that occurred this summer.

The AA has reported that the cost of an annual home contents insurance policy has risen by 3.3% over the last 12 months. An annual premium now stands at £94.84. The cost of buildings insurance has also increased by 5.2% which now costs £181.48.

The increased cost of premiums have been due to the floods the UK faced this summer, which caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to homes.

Currently insurers have an agreement with the Government to offer cover to properties that experience severe flooding until June 2013. However the agreement is expected to end next year because the Government has done little to improve flood defences around the UK since the agreement started in 2000.

Industry experts have now warned that over the years to come preparations need to be made to ensure the same flooding doesn’t happen again. Heavy rainfall is expected to increase dramatically putting flooding at the forefront of causing damage to homes.

Simon Douglas Director of AA Insurance commented: “If no agreement is reached soon this could lead to the most vulnerable homes becoming uninsurable.

“To put this into context, insurers measure flood risk in terms of events likely to happen over a period of years. 

“Even if a home is at risk of flooding once in a century, given that the average cost of repairing a flood-damaged property is £20,000 that is the equivalent of £200 per year, on top of the cost of covering other risks.

“It's vital that the government and local authorities make tackling the problem at source by investing in flood defences a priority.”

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By Amanda Bainbridge