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Lightning strikes twice for nearly 1 in 10 customers who claim

7th October 2011 Print

From an Indian summer to predicted snowfall in a matter of weeks, Britain's weather remains a mystery with adverse conditions severely affecting home insurance claims, has found.

In the last year alone, storm related home insurance claims have risen by 68% overall, with policy holders in Central Scotland 117% more likely to claim for a storm.

Storms are not the only weather conditions affecting home insurance claims with lightning striking twice for 1 in 10 unlucky UK residents; particularly in Wales and the West where people are 89% more likely to be hit by lightning than the UK average. Surprisingly, London, known for its lack of green space is the area that is 47% more likely to make claims due to falling trees.

With unpredictable weather likely to continue as winter approaches, is reminding customers to check their home insurance and make sure they are covered for adverse weather.

Mark Gabriel Head of Home Insurance said: "The consequences of having insufficient home cover are potentially severe.  Many Insurers will offer home emergency cover as an optional extra on their contents policies - you will either be charged extra on your standard annual premium, or pay a monthly subscription fee. But make sure you shop around for cover as premiums can vary greatly between providers; a comparison site is a great way to do this." has put together tips to help make sure your home is weather-proofed:

Secure any loose tiles - many accidents are caused by loose tiles blowing off a roof causing damage to your or neighbour's property and nearby cars.

Home emergency cover - gives you a helpline number to call if you need immediate help - for example if a pipe has burst, or if you've been the victim of storm damage, giving you peace of mind and help when you need it.

Check guttering isn't blocked - blocked drains in autumn and winter can create a backlog of water that can seep into the roof and cause issues with damp. Blocked drains can also cause this water backlog to freeze due to the cold temperatures. The weight of frozen water can then cause the gutter to separate from the house, causing further damage.

Cut back any loose branches or prominent branches that are near to your property - storms in autumn and winter can cause these to be blown loose and cause damage on any nearby property.

Put away garden furniture - standard garden furniture is designed to withstand summer showers, not 18 feet of snow.

Prevent burst pipes - major causes of home insurance claims comes from burst pipes when water freezes, expands, and escapes. Prevent freezing by putting pipe jackets on all water carrying pipes to insulate them. If you are leaving a property unattended for a period of time, it is a good idea to drain your water system entirely.