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Published on : April 10, 2024 17:17

Does Your Home Insurance Cover Weather Damage?

With extreme weather events and storms becoming more common, homeowners should take action to protect themselves and ask – does my home insurance cover weather damage?

Are There More Storms in the UK?

Storm Kathleen recently hit the UK with winds whipping up to as much as 70 mph after a particularly active storm season across the country. The current naming system for large storms was introduced in 2015 with 0-9 named storms hitting the UK by the end of each winter. 

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However, by the end of January 2024, the UK had already been battered by 10 named storms. Storm Kathleen is just the first of several additional named storms that meteorologists have identified as having the potential to develop, so there may be even more to come!

Although chance will always have an impact on variations in weather year-on-year, scientists agree that global temperatures are rising and with this increase, we should expect to see more extreme weather over the coming years.

March 2024 was recently announced as the tenth month in a row to be the hottest on record. The month was 1.68°C warmer than an estimate of the March average for 1850-1900, the designated pre-industrial reference period.

“March 2024 continues the sequence of climate records toppling for both air temperature and ocean surface temperatures, with the 10th consecutive record-breaking month,” says Samantha Burgess, Deputy Director of Copernicus Climate Service. “The global average temperature is the highest on record, with the past 12 months being 1.58°C above pre-industrial levels. Stopping further warming requires rapid reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.’’

Protecting Your Home

While these reports may sound alarming, there are some practical steps homeowners can take to ensure that they are protected against the cost of damage caused to their properties by adverse weather and storms.

Many home insurance policies include a level of protection for adverse weather conditions as a standard, however, it is important for homeowners to regularly check their policies to ensure that their cover is right for their needs.

What is included with Standard Home Insurance Coverage?   

What is covered by your home insurance product will depend on your specific policy, however, many standard features include protection against structural damage, additional living expenses should your home become uninhabitable, and protection for damage to personal belongings. 

Knowing in advance what is and what isn’t covered within your policy is vital to avoid any unexpected expenses should your home be impacted by weather or storm damage. 

   Additional Considerations and Exceptions to Cover 

It is typical for home insurance policies to cover several issues that might arise from adverse weather or storm damage, including:

  • Roof damage 
  • Water damage 
  • Sewer back-up 
  • Frozen pipes 
  • Fallen trees 
  • Loss of power

However, when reviewing your home insurance coverage, you’ll need to be aware of any exceptions and limitations that apply. For example, while a policy may cover the cost of damage caused by escaping water, it might not also cover the cost of repairing damaged pipes.

Different insurance providers may also have different definitions of what constitutes a ‘storm’. The Financial Ombudsman defines a storm as: “[Something that] generally involves violent winds, usually accompanied by rain, hail or snow”, but this can be interpreted in a variety of ways. 

Many insurers refer to the Beaufort Scale to distinguish between bad and extreme weather. Where policyholders and insurance providers do not agree on a claim, the Financial Ombudsman can help clients examine the case.     

Reviewing Your Home Insurance Policy 

As a homeowner, there are several steps you can take to ensure that your policy is suitable for your circumstances. These include:

  • Undertake regular policy reviews – take the time to read through your insurance documents so that you have a true understanding of what is covered. 
  • Pay close attention to policy exclusions and limitations – claims for accidental damage or repair to pipes, for example, may need additional coverage.
  • Think ahead about mitigation measures – installing storm shutters, reinforcing roofs and ensuring that your home has proper drainage can avoid having to rely on calling your insurer in the first place.   
  • Stay in communication with your insurer – if you know that you live in an area with specific risks, such as flooding, it’s always worth talking to your insurance provider to ensure that you have the right coverage.

Talk to the Home Insurance Experts Today

Everybody’s insurance requirements are different, which is why it’s important to speak to a highly-trained, professional Insurance Advisor to arrive at a tailor-made quote based on your circumstances.  

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If you are preparing to exchange contracts on a new home, it is a legal requirement to have a building insurance policy in place. So, whether you are reviewing and looking to upgrade from an existing policy or looking to put your first home insurance policy in place, contact Edward Mellor Estate Agents today.  

Every property and homeowner is different, so it’s important to get the right insurance policy. For your free quote, please complete and submit the online form or call us on 0161 443 4830.

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Insurance | Home Insurance | Contents Insurance 

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