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One in three flat owners 'think they are insured'

2nd May 2016
One in three flat owners 'think they are insured'

Research from a price comparison service has unearthed the shocking news that one and a half million home owners could be completely without insurance, incorrectly believing that the appropriate insurances are the responsibility of their freeholder.

The report documented the fact that one in three occupants of leasehold properties wrongly believed that it was the job of the freeholder to sign up for appropriate buildings and contents insurance - in reality, the freeholder only arranges buildings cover.

The price comparison company discovered that of the 5.3 million leasehold properties in the UK, 30% were without any kind of contents cover - meaning over 1.6 million occupants could face the prospect of having to replace all their possessions out of their own pocket. The average home has £45,000 worth of contents as of 2016.

Damian Reilly, head of home insurance at the price comparison site, said: “With the proportion of newbuild leaseholds growing, these findings are particularly worrying. Our research suggests that a significant number of leaseholders don’t know what their freeholder is obliged to organise for them. This is leading to a large number of people being blissfully unaware that the contents of their property are not insured.

“We have estimated that more than 30,000 of the starter and affordable homes the Government wants to build by 2020 will be underinsured. This figure could be conservative given the fact that almost all new residential properties in London are leaseholds.”

“We have estimated that more than 30,000 of the starter and affordable homes the Government wants to build by 2020 will be underinsured. This figure could be conservative given the fact that almost all new residential properties in London are leaseholds.”

He added: “Potentially millions of households face the prospect of double devastation – firstly discovering that they’ve been burgled and secondly finding out from their freeholder that their prized possessions are not covered by insurance. It is vital that leaseholders check what their freeholder is obliged to do, and that they make sure their contents are covered as well as the building in which they live.”

For more information on protecting your property with buildings and contents insurance, click here.

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