A recent survey conducted by the Association of British Insurers has revealed that home buyers are more likely to research parking availability over the risk of flooding. Nearly 28% of those surveyed said they would check whether their house was at risk of flooding, yet 33% said they would look into parking spaces and availability in the area.
While parking is understandably important for any homebuyer there is a serious concern in the flood risk industry that the property selling market is avoiding tell people about the full risk associated with a property they are looking at.
Traffic Light System
The Association of British Insurers are urging estate agents to provide honest information about flood risk in response to the study’s findings, and are currently pushing for use of a traffic light style system the industry body has devised. There are hopes to ensure that estate agent brochures and online property adverts be marked with either a red, amber, or green symbol in regards to the level of flood risk. The Environment Agency and Natural Resource Wales would provide the information for this, with their risk assessments deriving from the postcode of a given property. Beneath the proposal, home buyers interested in pursuing a property marked with a red or amber symbol would then be heavily urged to investigate the flood risks further – allowing them to assess the risks properly before investing in said property. Having the knowledge of potential flooding risk, the ABI explained, should then hopefully lead to further research being put in on the buyer’s behalf, such as through paying for a flood risk report.
Not Enough Information
The director of general insurance policy at the ABI, James Dalton, explained “anyone whose property is at flood risk needs to be aware of that so they can take steps to protect themselves”. However, while a wealth of information is available on “everything from local schools to a property’s efficiency rating” beneath property advertisements, he went on to state that “easily available information about the flood risk of an area is a glaring omission which needs to be put right”. The need for such information is backed up by recent studies conducted by the agency, which found that 1 in 6 homes across England and Wales are at significant risk of flooding – despite knowledge of this amongst residents remaining minimal.
If you would like any information on protecting yourself against flood risk, and would like to obtain a Flood Risk Assessment/ Report, please do not hesitate to contact our experienced consultancy team here at Unda for any advice and guidance you may need. Also be sure to check the immediate and/or long term flood risk that your property, or one you may be looking to buy, may face through using resources such as the GOV.uk website