We appreciate that no matter which sector you work in, the Coronavirus, and how we soften its impact swiftly and effectively to protect individuals and businesses has been the one topic dominating the headlines this week.
However, at some point in the future, once the dust has finally settled, we’ll have to look at another issue that isn’t likely to go away: helping those who’ve been affected by flooding. Some would argue that, although this won’t be at the top of our agenda in the short term, at a time when we’re encouraging people to spend more time at home, it’s even more important than ever that we aim to reduce (or at the very least not to increase) the number of people whose homes are at a high risk of flooding.
Last Thursday (which Advantage appreciate feels like a very long time ago in politics) the government announced a review into the building of thousands of homes on land at the highest risk of flooding following the worst winter storms in years.
The housing secretary, Robert Jenrick, told MPs last Thursday that officials would review the policy of building homes on high-risk flood plains and bring forward changes “in the coming months”.
It comes after the Guardian revealed that one in 10 of all new homes in England since 2013 have been built on land the government considers at the highest risk of flooding, with more than 11,000 planned for high-risk flood zones in the counties battered by storms in November and February.
Building on land prone to flooding is a risk to new homeowners and compounds the danger for surrounding areas, experts have said, as flood water that could otherwise be soaked up by green space instead runs quickly off concrete and into rivers.
The Government also aims to put an extra £5.2bn into flood defences. Perhaps this investment has already slipped somewhat down the list of priorities, but the team at Advantage hopes that this funding does materialise, even if this happens somewhat more slowly than initially hoped.
And if it does? Then the combination of new policies to protect future homeowners from flooding and funding to help existing homeowners will be welcomed by many. We understand that this story may get lost in the noise during a period when good news or long-term plans aren’t generally making the headlines, and understandably so. But we really do hope that we’re seeing the seeds of a plan to protect communities from the fear of flooding.
For more updates from the Advantage team, please pay a visit to our regularly updated news page. And if you’d like more information about structural warranties, you’ll find it on our home page. Thank you for reading!