Mon 23 Aug 2004
Firm Offers ‘Home Blight` Insurance
By Nicky Burridge, Personal Finance Correspondent, PA News Homeowners worried about the impact noisy neighbours or a mobile phone mast would have on the value their property can take out a new insurance policy, it emerged today.Insurance broker Lucas Fettes & Partners has launched Home Value Protection Insurance, offering people cover against tens of thousands of pounds being knocked off the value of their home as a result of blights in their neighbourhood.
The policy will pay out up to £100,000 plus moving expenses and legal fees for a range of nuisances in the vicinity of someone’s home, including the construction of mobile phone masts, new roads, airports, retail developments and prisons.It will also pay out if noisy neighbours move in and people could even claim on the policy if a brothel was set up next door which caused a nuisance through high noise levels.The policy, which is underwritten by various Lloyd’s of London syndicates, costs a flat fee of £12 a month.The policy must be taken out within 13 months of moving to a new property or remortgaging if a local authority search was carried out, and homeowners must sign a declaration saying they are not currently aware of any problems.The group has described the move as the most important development in the household insurance market since subsidence cover became widely available in the early 1970s.It hopes to take in £1 million in premiums during the coming 12 months, and is looking at marketing the policies through mortgage lenders.Richard Heighton, partner at Lucas Fettes, said: “We are a nation of homeowners and for many our homes are our largest asset.“The impact of blight upon homeowners can be devastating and force many to consider moving, thus incurring significant additional costs as well as loss of equity.“It is for these reasons that Home Value Protection Insurance is being launched.”
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