Over recent years I have often accommodated people in our serviced apartments who’ve sadly suffered damages to their homes because of flooding – either from building problems, the washing machine leaking or from natural causes.
The lengths of each stay have varied, but in each case it was very clear that neither my guests nor the insurance providers for their homes were well prepared for what kind of temporary accommodation they were entitled to. So briefly, here are a few thoughts on this subject – including what to look for in your insurance policy, and why serviced apartments make sense in these difficult circumstances.
Make sure your buildings insurance policy includes flood protection
Most buildings insurance policies include flood cover, but that won’t include contents insurance. So make sure you have a separate contents insurance policy for all your belongings. Flood insurance should cover removing debris, professional fees, repairing damage, replacing belongings and alternative accommodation – so check for all of these details.
Find out if you live in a high-risk area
When considering the type of cover you need, you first need to be clear on how likely flooding is in your area. This ‘flood map planner’ should do the trick – and help you to make an informed decision.
Use an insurance broker
Flood insurance can vary wildly in terms of cost, so I think it’s really worth getting the support of a specialist. Brokers won’t normally charge you a fee, but will work for you to ensure you understand all aspects of your cover and get the right deal.
Check what kind of alternative accommodation your level of cover will provide
The problem with many of the cheapest policies is that, in the event of serious flooding, your alternative accommodation budget will be slim. And it’s vital that you consider how much you might need. For example, if you’d need accommodation that housed a family, a budget that only stretches for a few days in a budget hotel won’t cut it. Do your research and think realistically about how much time the average family spends away from home while damage is repaired and buildings are dried out. Once again, a broker is invaluable here.
Why serviced apartments are ideal in these difficult times
For longer stays, serviced apartments like mine are proven to be more affordable than mid-range hotels – especially when taking into account the extra costs like eating out when staying in hotels.
But more importantly, serviced apartments allow you and your family the extra space, privacy and freedom that you’ll desperately need to cope with the stress. And having had experience of supporting families in exactly this situation, I always work hard to find a solution that suits your cover and helps you to get back on your feet.
To find out more about my temporary accommodation, head here.