Before the storm - Aviva warns homeowners to protect their properties

Article date: 10 November 2010

With gales of over 45mph predicted across much of the UK on Thursday and Friday, Aviva is advising homeowners to take basic precautions to protect themselves and their property.

The UK’s largest insurer has its network of contractors, claims teams and call centre staff on standby to help those who might be affected by the stormy weather.

“Like floods, tornadoes, earthquakes and freeze, storms and gales are covered as standard by your home insurance policy,” said Rob Townend, director of property claims at Aviva

“There is no such thing as an “Act of God” exclusion - this is exactly what your insurance covers you for!

“So any damage caused to your property as a direct result of storm force wind and rain is covered and if you are forced to move out of your home the cost of alternative accommodation is also paid for. We can make separate arrangements for your pets too!”

What to do before the storm

  • Park the car in a garage, or away from large trees.
  • Secure or lock- away loose objects such as garden furniture and ornaments, bikes, children’s toys and ladders.
  • Fasten all doors and windows.
  • With electrical storms, remove the aerial from the TV set.

If you have time:

  • Check for loose tiles on the roof
  • Secure any weak fences and posts – to minimise the risk of causing damage to other parts of your property
  • Check aerials or satellite dishes are securely fixed

What to do after the storm

If your property suffers damage, ring your insurer immediately. Aviva has dedicated teams of experts who will be able to give you advice on how to prevent further damage and to assist you in sorting out your claim.

The most common types of storm claims

  • Roof tiles blown off, often in conjunction with damage to gutters, fascias etc.
  • TV/radio aerials damaged.
  • Breakage of glass – most often greenhouse glass.
  • Lifting of roofing felt, particularly on sheds.
  • Damage to chimneys.
  • Trees falling down and damaging buildings
  • Boundary walls blown down.

But do bear in mind an insurance policy is not a maintenance policy – most companies expect your home to be in reasonable condition, wear and tear isn’t covered. Fences, gates and hedges that have blown down as a direct result of high winds are also generally excluded.

-ends -

If you are a journalist and would like further information, please contact:

Rebecca Holmes: Aviva Press Office: 01603 685177 / 07800 690731
Email: rebecca.l.holmes@aviva.co.uk

Notes to editors:
Aviva is one of the world's largest insurance groups* with 53 million customers worldwide and 46,000 employees.

Aviva’s main activities are long-term savings, fund management and general insurance, with worldwide total sales of £45.1 billion and funds under management of £379 billion*.

In the UK, Aviva takes care of its 19.2 million customers by helping them look after their future, protecting what’s important – from their health to their homes, their cars to their business – and saving for the future.

Aviva has a 10.5%** share of the UK life and pensions market and insures one in six homes and one in ten cars in the UK. It is also one of the oldest UK insurers, with a heritage stretching back more than 300 years.

RAC, which is owned by Aviva, provides breakdown and insurance services for individuals and businesses and has around seven million customers.

Aviva is carbon neutral worldwide, and is ranked in the top 10% of socially responsible companies globally by the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index.  In 2009 we invested £3.8m into the community. Read our corporate responsibility report at www.aviva.com/cr

Aviva’s global Street to School programme is working in partnership with Railway Children in the UK to get children living on the streets back into education and everyday life. Find out more at www.aviva.co.uk/street-to-school.

The Aviva media centre at www.aviva.com/media includes images, company and product information and a news release archive.

For broadcast-standard video, please visit www.aviva.com/media/video

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*based on gross worldwide premiums at 31 December 2009

**Source: ABI data released August 2010

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