Risk of Flooding

Recent flooding events in the UK have occurred with little warning, causing financial disruption and inconvenience to landlords, property investors and developers.

The heavy rain of the last few months has led to parts of the UK being affected by a wide variety of flooding – from flash floods, which are caused by a deluge of rain in a short amount of time, to surface water flooding, where the excess water has nowhere to flow to.

The unpredictable nature of the weather has made it difficult for landlords to know whether their property is at risk or not. For property investors, developers and landlords looking to invest in a particular area, research and due diligence are essential to see if there are any known potential risks from flooding.

Discover the level of flood risk you potentially face using flood maps:




Northern Ireland

“Insurance is all built on history and trends,” said Jonathan Scotcher, Underwriting Manager for Real Estate at Zurich. “But the intensity of current weather events means that flooding can occur in places with no previous history.”

“Areas that tend to suffer surface water flooding are often well developed. They are built-up areas, where the infrastructure and drainage systems just can’t cope with the sudden increase in water. Green areas are also minimal, leaving the water with no place to go.”

Identifying danger areas

In December 2013, the Environment Agency released detailed flood maps of England, including areas at risk from these assorted types of floods. One of the key features of the maps is to show properties at risk of flooding.

The comprehensive resource allows property developers and landlords to better determine risks to properties, and across their whole portfolio. It will also help insurers reassess flood risks in the UK.

Similar flood maps are also available for ScotlandWales and Northern Ireland.

Source: Zurich 2017

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