Flood-hit homeowners could benefit from cheaper insurance
- Credit: Ben Cheyne
Homeowners in flood-hit areas could be entitled to discounted insurance premiums if they install protections against the elements under government proposals.
On Monday, ministers launched a consultation into plans for insured householders to be able to claim money to cover the damage caused and receive funds to make their homes more resilient.
Insured homeowners could also be able to obtain discounted insurance premiums if they install resilience measures, such as flood barriers and air brick covers.
She said she was concerned that future insurance premiums might be inflated, but welcomed the plans.
"These proposals are interesting and would be so important.," she said.
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"I would welcome, in principle, a government approach to dealing with flooding, but at the same time I do feel we need to understand and investigate the circumstances that led to this flooding."
The Bungay Town councillor has since been unable to return home while repairs are carried out, but welcomed the council's "proactive" approach after they vowed to work with other local authorities to best protect its residents.
She said: "Although we live next to the River Waveney, there is a flood plain opposite which always does its job.
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"We had no reason to believe we were at risk, but the warning came at midnight into Christmas Eve, and there was nothing we could do at that time.
"By 5am the water was in our living room.
"We have neighbours who have been here for 50 years and they have never been flooded until last year."
Waveney MP Peter Aldous called for a major extension of measures introduced in Lowestoft, which has seen many residents in the town benefit from home defences as a result of a multi-million pound funding boost from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).
He said: "There are homes in Lowestoft, Beccles and Bungay and beyond which should have the option to benefit from these measures."
Launching the consultations, environment secretary George Eustice said: "I am determined to get more support to people hit time and again by floods."
The Association of British Insurers said: “We will be studying these proposals carefully and feeding back into the consultation, in order that we are best placed to minimise and manage the flood threat.”