An essential guide to flood safety and resilience: Advice for UK homeowners

Submitted by Michael Morris | published 5th Dec 2021 | last updated 21st Dec 2021
Morpeth flood, 2008. Photo by John Dal

Flood risks in the UK

Climate change brings an increased likelihood and severity of flooding. In the UK, heavy rain has become more common, and the Met Office estimates that climate change has increased the risk of severe winter rain seven-fold.

The UK insurance price comparison website Compare The Market has developed a flood resilience guide for home buyers and homeowners in the UK. The essential guide to flood safety and resiliency: Advice for homeowners provides an overview of how people can protect their home from climate-related flood risk in the UK.

Although estimating the specific risk level for individual properties in the UK is complex, the guide can help readers understand how local flooding may affect property values, and how increasing flood risk affects insurance prices and premiums.

The guide serves as an example of the required support for local communities to adapt to climate change.

*Details of how the guide has been developed and structured can be found below. You can access the full guide here

How the guide was developed

The guide was developed by a team of researchers based on reports and data available from the UK Government, The National Flood Forum and the Met Office. These include the Environment Agency's report on flood risk in the UK (2009), a Foresight report on Future Flooding in the UK (2004), and Met Office guidance on UK and Global extreme rainfall and flood events. The guide was developed to contribute to making the UK’s flood preparation and mitigation efforts more robust and impactful.

The guide aims to: (1) raise awareness of the realities of flooding and flood risk in the UK, and (2) aid consumers to make smarter decisions on their property purchases. It is intended for a wide audience, including consumers (i.e. home and property owners), policy-makers, and communities. The guide covers three key areas:

  • Flood safety: planning to keep yourself and your family safe
  • Flood resiliency and resistance: how to protect your home from flood damage
  • Flood finances: how to protect yourself financially. 

Links to useful resources and tools are provided throughout the guide, making them easier to find and access for homeowners through a single entry-point. These include:

Structure of the guide

The guide has ten sections to help users navigate a wealth of information and access numerous additional resources and tools:

  1. Flooding: how big is the risk? 
  2. Flooding in the UK
  3. What causes flooding? 
  4. Buying a house in a flood-risk area 
  5. How to protect your home from flooding
  6. Who’s responsible for flood safety? 
  7. How to protect your home from flood damage 
  8. How to protect yourself financially 
  9. What to do if there's a flood in your area 
  10. What to do after a flood

The guide is being shared with different organisations and stakeholders involved with flood preparation and climate change, as well as consumer-focused groups geared towards dealing with climate hazards. It is also available on the Compare the Market website, which specialises in helping consumers find and access domestic insurance.

Explore the full guide -
The essential guide to flood safety and resiliency: advice for homeowners