55% of people in high-risk flood areas regret moving there, report finds

More than half (55%) of people living in high-risk flood areas regret having moved there, according to a report.

Aviva, the insurance company which released the findings, said a high risk flood area was defined as having a one in 75 year risk of flooding.

It also said 42% of everyone it surveyed across areas with different flood risks would consider moving from their property to avoid being flooded in the future.

However, more than half (53%) of people who think their home is at high risk from flooding have been unable to sell their home, it found.

Seven in 10 (70%) UK residents surveyed said they are concerned about the changing environment making flooding worse in the future.

Those whose homes have been previously flooded were the most worried, with more than nine in 10 (91%) concerned that flooding will get worse.

Aviva found that nearly two-thirds (65%) of homes which have flooded have suffered at least two floods, and a quarter (24%) have flooded three times.

Colm Holmes, chief executive officer of general insurance at Aviva, said: “This year we’ve been all too aware of the devastation that extreme weather and floods can bring, with consecutive storms leaving homes under contaminated water, businesses unable to trade and communities cut off, sometimes for days or weeks.”

Despite their concerns for the future and regrets about moving to a flood zone, flood risks were 11th on people’s priority lists when looking for a home.

Its appearance, the commuting distance and proximity to green space and parks were the top three factors.

More than 2,000 people were surveyed.

Aviva has compiled some flood-related tips for home buyers:

– Check the flood risk in your new area – www.gov.uk/check-flood-risk.

– Get a full buildings survey, which should include any flood risk.

– If you are buying a newly-built home, ask your home builder if they have installed any flood mitigation measures.

– Make sure your insurance policy provides flood cover and ask your insurer if they are part of the Flood Re scheme which aims to make the flood cover part of household insurance more affordable – or visit www.floodre.co.uk for more information.

– After you have moved in, check the house for any loose tiles or damaged fences and try to secure the property as much as possible ahead of bad weather.