Advice

Protect your home against flooding to avoid costly disaster

With heavy rainfall hitting much of the UK in recent weeks, the issue of flooding is one that is close to many of our hearts at the moment. Whether you have suffered or not, there should be no doubt that flooding is a tremendous problem that can occur at almost any time, often without warning.

As a result, you are advised to do all you can to install flood prevention features that will put your home in the strongest possible position to repel water. Until you have become a victim of flooding it might be hard to imagine just what devastation it can cause, but it is certainly not worth taking a risk and finding out for yourself.

Insurance firm Aviva last week said its team of staff are working round the clock to help those of you who have been hit by excess water in recent times. Carole Gallagher, head of property claims at the firm, said getting out to individual homes to assess the damage will be a priority.

Of course, none of us can prevent water from falling in our area or in large volumes, but we can take steps to ensure our homes are adequately protected. Why not call in a professional local tradesman now to see what he can do for you? A plumber or builder might be best qualified to assess where your abode might be going wrong.

It might be worth looking into ideas such as raising certain features or parts of the home. Alternatively, you could have physical defences – such as barriers – installed in key positions that will hopefully stem the flow of water in the event of a flooding crisis. Be confident that there is always something that can be done to help you out of what might at first look like a very big hole.

While none of us want to dwell on it, the simple fact is that flooding costs big money to overcome. Indeed, Lloyds TSB recently suggested the exact cost of an average incident is £17,000. So if you become a victim, you are sure to either be making a large insurance claim or finding a huge sum of money from your own bank account. Taking a few simple steps to stamp out the threat of water at a much earlier stage is surely the sensible solution.

Those of you in Sussex, the West Country and Cornwall, where flooding has struck in recent weeks, might think you are safe. Unfortunately, the law of averages just does not stack up when it comes to the weather and you remain at significant risk. If it has happened once, it can certainly happen again.

So what exactly can a professional tradesman do for you and your home that will allow you to sleep at night with renewed confidence that your building will not be struck by excess rainwater?

Well, it might seem an obvious suggestion, but targeting the areas where water is likely to seep into your home is a good starting point. You might need to consider whether your doors, windows and walls are strong enough to ensure water does not invade your tidy and stylish living room, bathroom or kitchen. Another good idea is to hire a builder to add an extension that includes flood protection as a standard feature of the design.

With a potential payout of £17,000 on the cards, you would be foolish to rule out flood protection improvements as part of almost any work on your home right now. It might add a few pounds to your next project, or even require a tradesman or two coming out specially to tackle the issue, but such a cost is sure to be worth it when heavy rain inevitably returns to your part of the UK.

You can never protect against every issue, but some seem a little more common than others and in a country as notoriously wet as the UK, we would advise paying special attention to the possibility of flooding striking your home sooner rather than later.

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