The British Insurance Brokers’ Association (BIBA) will outline in Parliament how a new innovation from insurance brokers is able to improve access to flood insurance for SMEs in flood risk areas and will emphasise the importance of investment in flood prevention and resilience measures.
Presenting to the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Flood Prevention later today, Graeme Trudgill, BIBA’s Executive Director, will explain how BIBA has launched a commercial scheme with MGA, R&Q, available through BIBA members that does not require legislation and is not funded by a levy.
The scheme aims to improve the availability of flood insurance for SMEs who were excluded from the Flood Re scheme.
Trudgill will outline how BIBA has worked with experts to secure advance mapping technology and quality capacity through Lloyd’s of London along with an option to reduce the flood excess. The scheme aims to provide quotations for the vast majority of SMEs, take into account any flood resistance and resilience measures and for insurers to provide resilient repair as part of the claims solution if a flood occurs.
Trudgill is set to emphasise the importance of flood resilience by explaining that the more resilient properties are, the easier it is to insure and give more attractive terms. But he will warn that expectations need to be managed as it will be challenging to provide low cost quotations for the highest risk properties that have previously been flooded, have not been repaired resiliently or where the Environment Agency has not resolved the cause of the flood.
The steps that the Government need to take to help address the market pressures and assist in ensuring insurance is available will be outlined. Trudgill will make a number of calls on the APPG to take forward. These include:
- Accreditation of flood defence measures, as per the DEFRA action plan. If this could be achieved and a universal kite mark given then this could assist underwriters in their rating of the risk.
- For an increase in DEFRA’s budget for defence and maintenance work in line with the recommendations of the Committee on Climate Change
- For Government to roll out a wider system of resilience grants to SMEs. In a recent BIBA survey, 67% of brokers responding reported that it would be easier to place the insurance risk if their client could use this grant.
- Government grants to be available from a single central source as opposed to the local authority which did not work well in the winter 2015 floods.