Insurance policies may not cover loss of garden contents warns Defaqo

01 August 2007
The recent flooding has caused headaches for many UK homeowners but financial research company Defaqto is advising people to check the small print on their contents insurance policies to see if their garden contents are also covered.

Many home owners may be unable to claim back the thousands of pounds worth of garden contents that has floated away on the flood waters depending on their policy, which can often vary enormously from company to company.

Theft, flooding and storms are considered the main risks to outdoor items such as garden furniture, bikes, trampolines and paddling pools and are typically covered on the majority of policies. However, Defaqto research has found that approximately ten per cent of contents insurance policies currently exclude flood damage to ‘contents in the open.’

While intune’s and Direct Line’s policies provide cover for loss or damage due to flooding for contents in the open, Esure, Saga, Churchill and MMA Lifestyle do not and nearly all policies exclude damage caused by storm or flood to gates, hedges and fences.

Other areas for concern include policies which only provide cover for items ‘normally left in the open’ such as garden furniture and statues, however items brought outside such as barbecues or stereos are not covered by this type of policy.

Kate Marsden, Marketing Director of Defaqto Group, comments: “Homeowners need to check the small print of their policies extremely carefully and ensure that they really understand what is, and what is not, covered. In light of this year’s flooding, insurers may well change their policies, so cover may be radically different at renewal.”

Items stored in outbuildings and lost or damaged plants in gardens are also subject to different levels of cover depending on the policy.

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