If you live near the coast, by a major river or on low lying land, there is a chance you could be in an area at risk of flooding.
With the massive damage and destruction flooding can cause it is vital to ensure your protected with adequate buildings and contents insurance.
However, flood insurance rates have slowly been climbing in recent years and since the existing Statement of Principles agreement expired on 31st July 2013, flood insurance prices looked set to sky rocket for high risk homeowners.
This is where Flood Re comes in.
What is Flood Re?
Flood Re is an agreement between the UK government and the insurance industry that was launched in April 2016.
It aims to ensure homeowners and residents living in high flood risk areas of Britain can continue to find affordable flood insurance. UK home insurance companies pay into a collective fund which will be used to offset the costs of flood damage.
Are all homes included in the Flood Re cap?
No, to be eligible your home must meet the following criteria:
Have a Council Tax band A to H
Be used for residential purposes
Have been built before 1st January 2009
Be in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland (Isle of Man and Channel Islands are no included)
Business properties such as B&Bs will only be protected if they meet the set criteria.
How much does Flood Re cost?
Flood Re is funded by a £180m levy each year paid by all UK home insurance companies.
The premiums charged to home insurers will be capped based on the council tax band of the property being insured.
The premiums start at £210 per annum for homes in Bands A and B rising to £1,200 for homes in Band H.
It is up to each insurer whether this cost is passed onto policy holders in the form of increased premiums.
These extra funds are put to one side to offset the cost of repairing flood damage when it occurs and ensure that the flood insurance cap is affordable for the insurance industry.
Finding the best flood insurance for your home
Flood Re should mean you will pay less for home insurance if you live in a flood affected area, but you should still shop around for the best deal.
Here is how to find the best home insurance in flood risk areas so you know that you are financially protected should the worse happen.
Are you at high risk of flood?
Before you start looking for flood insurance you need to carry out your very own flood risk assessment.
The easiest way to do this is using a flood risk map or flood zone map which illustrates which areas in the UK are at the greatest risk of flooding.
You can check if there are any potential flood zones in your area by using this Environment Agency flood map.
Compare flood insurance policies
If you think that there is a significant chance that your home could be at risk of flooding a standard home insurance policy will not suffice. You will need to make sure that you protect yourself with specialist flood insurance that gives you the buildings and contents cover you need, and protects you against flood damage.
As with any type of insurance you will need to compare what is on offer from each provider, check the policy exclusions and the excess you will have to pay and weigh up the cost of the insurance premiums.
Look at whether you would get alternative accommodation if your home were flooded, whether garages and out-buildings will be included in your cover and whether the policy extends to cover belongings like your car.
Then compare flood insurance quotes in our flood insurance comparison.
Protect yourself against flooding
Getting comprehensive buildings insurance will give you financial protection against flooding but you still need to do all you can to limit flood damage.
Signing up for Environment Agency Flood Alerts and flood warnings will give you extra time to prepare your personal flood defences and move your valuables and belongings upstairs out of reach of the flood water if there is a risk.