It is cold and wet at the moment with no foreseeable let up in the rain, which for people living around coastal areas that suffer erosion and those on flood plains like the Somerset levels, must be an even more daunting prospect. Trying to keep their homes dry and in one piece, let alone warm, is an uphill struggle.
Everything must seem to be conspiring against them at present, the force of nature as well as the Environment Agency or government departments dealing with sea defences and rivers that need dredging, so it is not surprising that from time to time people take matters into their own hands. For several years one man has fought a battle against the North Sea, and has brought in quantities of aggregate and other materials to one part of the Eastern coastline to prop up the crumbling cliffs and keep his property intact. He battles on against the local council, Mother Nature and criticism from a range of other agencies.
Consumers faced with 25% increase in insurance costsIt will take months to clean up around the areas that have been flooded and already there are talks about rising costs to consumer’s insurance bills. Not only have there been claims in the news last week that prices will increase by around 25% for some people, but insurance companies may charge more for their flood surveys, these can already cost customers nearly £500 at present. This is the second year running that UK residents have had problems with flooding but it is not until 2015 that a new deal will come into being to cap costs for consumers living in the worst hit areas. It is difficult to understand that as a nation we are very quick to react to some issues, yet it takes nearly 2 years to pass legislation that will at least put a limit on how much people pay out to keep their homes intact.
Consumers budget could be all at sea!It may be argued that people know the risk they are taking on if they move into areas that can be affected by erosion or flooding, but many on the Somerset levels for example, have lived in the same village for years as did their parents and grandparents before them. For others who bought homes by the sea as a retirement plan, they could not have foreseen the drastic erosion that has occurred along the eastern cost of England over the last few years. Plus, it may be that they could not afford a home elsewhere. Whatever the reason, not only do they have to try to rebuild their lives and homes but at the same time many will be trying to work out how they can pay an inflated insurance bill they had not budgeted for this time last year.
If you have been affected by the floods and had an excessive increase in your insurance premiums as a result which you don’t think is justified– we want to hear from you, we’re listening!