Homeowners contemplating not having home insurance should take note of the thousands of customers who have suffered thanks to the dry weather in the last year.
Normally it’s stories of floods that will scare homeowners the most but this year the dry weather has led to buildings moving and cracked walls. Because of the lack of rainwater in the ground, experts believe movements are being caused to house foundations, and a hosepipe ban this summer could see the situation get even worse.
It’s mostly clay soil, which shrinks when there is no rain, and that causes subsidence and home insurance claims as a result. Last year saw over 32,000 claims, with the insurance companies footing a bill of over £150million as a result.
British Insurance Brokers Association spokesperson, Steve Foulsham explained, ‘With the drought conditions at the moment we expect to see more claims. It can be traumatic for people.’
He added, ‘Repairs can take some time and you might have to move out of your property.’
Homeowners are being warned to check their policy as some excesses for subsidence are very high. Some are as much as £1,000 and a lot more than water damage claims.
You’ll also notice that after making a claim your subsequent premiums could be quite a lot more expensive as insurers remain wary of your home.
The head of home insurance at GoCompare explained, ‘If it’s been prevalent locally, it will almost certainly affect your insurance.’
He added that some insurers may refuse to offer any cover at all, and that you may need to turn to specialist brokers who will insure on a home by home basis.
According to the experts, the best bet if your home is suffering from subsidence is underpinning, which strengthens the foundations, but the cost of such a move can cost up to £50,000, and occasionally more.