FLASH floods have battered London and the South this weekend just days after a record-breaking heatwave left Brits sizzling.
Over four feet of water fell in just a matter of hours across some parts of the country including the M11, where families were left trapped in their cars.
East London was hit by a series of floods after a river nearby burst its banksCredit: Rex
It’s left a number of homes flooded following the wild storms too – and Brits have been warned to prepare for three more days of storm misery.
If your home has been damaged, we explain how to claim on your insurance – and what to do if you don’t have any.
Will I be covered if my home has been damaged by flooding?
According to Confused.com, building and contents insurance policies usually cover against storm damage.
That means you’re likely to be able to make a claim if the bad weather has battered your home.
Aside from flooding, you’re likely to be covered for the following damage to your home if there was a storm according to the comparison website:
- Roof tiles that have blown off in the winds
- Damage to the house caused by lightning
- Bricks and mortar broken by fallen trees and debris
You’re not likely to be able to get a payout for things such as garden fences, sheds, gates and hedges unless your policy specifically says it will.
Many policies often exclude damage made to anything outside the house itself unless you have specific cover.
In some cases, insurers may refuse to pay out if you didn’t maintain your home to a good enough standard.
For example, if you make a claim for water damage to your house after the storm but the insurer’s inspection finds that the gutters aren’t clear.
In other cases, your building insurance might not cover your possessions so it’s important to check the small print before taking out the policy.
If your house is damaged to badly that you can’t live in it, your insurer should pay for alternative accommodation until they have repaired it.
How do I make a claim?
Get in touch with your insurer as soon as you can and find out if they have any specific requests that you need to do to make the claim.
Make sure that you take detailed photographs of all of the damage that’s been caused to your property and possessions.
You’ll need to keep all of the damaged property too as the insurance company might want to carry out their own inspection of them before making a decision.
If you need to make any emergency temporary repairs, then you should let your insurer know about it first.
Keep all of the receipts and invoices too as you can add this to your claim.
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What happens if I don’t have insurance?
If you’re uninsured and your home is affected by flooding, it’s likely you’ll have to foot the bill for the cost of repairing it yourself.
But there is help available to you if you’re struggling to pay the bill.
You might be able to get financial help from your local council – but help varies depending on where you live.
Many councils including Hertfordshire allowed homeowners to apply for a grant of up to £5,000 if they were affected by the Ciara and Dennis storms back in February last year.
But it is unclear whether the same amount of help will be available now – make sure to check in with your local council for more details.
According to Flood Guidance, you could get a reduction on your council tax bill, which will help free up money for you to repair and clean up your home.
The amount of cash you could get knocked off your bill depends on your circumstances and you need to apply through your local council – you can find out which one is yours here.
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