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flood proof home

With the ever-changing climate and recent flooding problems within the UK, it’s no surprise that many people are looking for ways they can flood-proof their home. The consequences of flooding can be disastrous and despite having an insurance policy for your home, many properties are not insured in the event of a natural disaster such as flooding so it’s a good idea to reduce the risks caused by flooding damage as much as possible.

It is difficult to completely protect your home from flooding but there are many ways you can reduce the potential damage. If you have an outbuilding such as a shed or garage, it is worth stocking up on sandbags. You can often get these from your local council or builder’s yard, however sandbags will only be useful for flooding caused by heavy rainfall as opposed to groundwater issues. Simple things like varnishing your skirting boards can help make them more water resistant, but if you have a larger budget you could replace your skirting with plastic water resistant boards. You can also invest in air brick covers, but these should only be in place during flooding and be removed afterwards to allow the bricks to dry out.

You can also fit non-return valves on your pipes which can help stop sewage flowing back up from toilets or sinks. It’s also a good idea to place valuable items on shelving which can help prevent damage in the event of a flood. Similarly you can also raise your appliances slightly, particularly if they are free standing. This can help save thousands of pounds if you are in a flood risk area.

If you do live within a high flood risk area, it is a good idea to consider other things to help protect your home against flooding. You can increase the height of sockets, which is costly but can save you money in the event of a flood. You can also replace carpets with concrete floors and ceramic tiles, and choose rugs instead which are easier to move out of the way if you have a flood warning in place.

Try and choose plastic or solid wood units or furniture over chipboard or MDF as they will absorb much less water. You can also have sealant applied to your exterior walls, or have water-resistant air bricks fitted rather than having covers. There are also ways to landscape the outside of your home to which diverts flood water away from your property. You can also install an outside pump to deal with groundwater which is useful providing the inlet is lower than the water level.

There are many options available, but obviously you don’t want your home to feel like a fortress or uncomfortable. Simply consider the flood risk against your home when thinking about your options. Any protection against flooding is better than nothing, and can save you damage of personal items which could be very sentimental as well as the cost of building repairs.

by Cormac Henderson

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