Traditionally, it hasn’t always been easy getting affordable home insurance if you live in an area at high risk of flooding.
Because if your home is more likely to flood insurers may need to charge higher insurance premiums.
Flood Re explained
Flood Re is a scheme set up between the Government and insurance companies to make the flood cover part of home insurance more widely available and affordable.
Flood Re is a reinsurance company, which means insurance companies are able to insure themselves against losses because of flooding. They can pass on part of the risk and cost for flooding to Flood Re, not to you.
Unlike other reinsurance companies, Flood Re is a not-for-profit fund that’s publicly accountable and owned and managed by the insurance industry.
How does Flood Re work?
When choosing your home insurance, if your provider has signed up to Flood Re, nothing changes.
You buy your policy in the same way: either directly with us or your chosen provider. The premiums you pay will continue to be based on the details you give.
If your home is eligible, then the part of your home insurance that covers you against flood damage may be passed to the Flood Re scheme. All of this will happen automatically.
If you live in a flood risk area or your home has previously been damaged by flooding, you’ll be covered by Flood Re, if your home is eligible, when you take out home insurance with us.
Claiming for flooding
Flood Re doesn’t make any difference to how you claim in the event of a flood. You don’t claim with Flood Re, you just follow ours, or chosen provider’s, normal claims process. We or your chosen insurer will manage the claim as normal. The only difference is that insurers can then recover the costs from Flood Re.
Who pays for Flood Re?
Every insurer that offers home insurance in the UK must pay into Flood Re each year.
Plus, when Flood Re accepts a flood risk, it charges the insurer a fixed premium based on your home’s council tax band and a standard excess of £250 for each policy.
Combined, all of this raises £180m every year for ‘flood insurance’ that covers the flood risks in home insurance policies.
How Flood Re can help you
Flood Re means homeowners are able to access insurance for eligible properties that are at risk of flooding or have been flooded before.
You can also find out more information about flood risks to your home and how to reduce them from Flood Re.
Is your home eligible?
The Flood Re scheme only applies to properties built before 2009. The aim of this cut-off point was to discourage developers from building homes in flood-prone areas. Holiday lets, properties owned by buy-to-let landlords, commercial and leasehold properties are also excluded, as well as homes in the Channel Islands and Isle of Man.
The scheme is only designed to last for 25 years and will end in 2039 because, by then, insurers should be handling flood risks differently.
With new homes continuing to be built in flood risk areas, it’s important to be aware of the danger to your property or any property you’re thinking of buying or renting. You can find out the flood risk of a property using the Government’s flood risk checker.
If you’re buying a new build home, ask your homebuilder if they’ve installed any flood mitigation measures. Plus, always consider getting a full buildings survey, which should include any flood risk.
Get more information
Although you’re not required to do anything to access Flood Re, you can find more information about the scheme and advice on how to tackle flood risks on the Flood Re website.