Property insurance claims rocket by 58%

Domestic property insurance claims rocketed by pounds 218m in the first three months of this year against the same period in 1995, a rise of 58 per cent, according to figures from the Association of British Insurers yesterday.

The increase in the value of claims raises fears of rising premiums for millions of policyholders. A number of large insurers have said that the long-running price war for home and contents cover may be drawing to a close.

Sandy Dunn, managing director at Touchline Insurance, part of GAN, one of Europe's largest insurance groups, said: "The rise we are seeing demonstrates that the market is beginning to adjust to a more realistic level.

"It is anticipated that this trend will apply to buildings insurance in the near future, with contents insurance following later in the year."

The ABI's survey showed that although theft claims dropped slightly over the first three months of this year, weather damage increased by 155 per cent, to pounds 308m. The value of subsidence claims doubled in the first three months of 1996, costing insurance companies pounds 68m.

Commercial property insurance also saw a substantial increase. Fire claims cost pounds 118m, a rise of 13 per cent over the first three months of 1995. Business interruption claims, many of which were made in the wake of the new year cold snap, rose 14 per cent, to pounds 48m.

The overall figure for weather damage in relation to commercial property insurance rose by 208 per cent, up to pounds 111m.

Mark Boleat, director general at the ABI, the industry's trade body, said: "The main factor in these disappointing results is the freezing conditions in the early days of 1996, with the effect of last year's hot summer still coming through in the form of subsidence claims.

"The overall rise in the cost of commercial property claims is disturbing, particularly as three of the four main categories of business have shown marked increases, with the new year having a marked impact."

The ABI's figures also showed domestic theft claims, at pounds 160m, down 3 per cent on the same period last year. Although the average cost of a claim at pounds 1,010, rose by 5 per cent on the first three months of 1995, the number dropped 9 per cent to 158,000. Commercial property claims were down by 25 per cent, to pounds 40m.

Mr Boleat added: "The only encouraging news is the reduction in theft claims, but even here, ttheft of computers and associated equipment continues to rise and too many of the traditional targets are still receiving the attention of thieves."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Stik on the crane as he completed the mural
art
News
Happy in his hat: Pharrell Williams
people
News
i100(More than you think)
News
Phyllis Dorothy James on stage during a reading of her book 'Death Comes to Pemberley' last year
peopleJohn Walsh pays tribute to PD James, who died today
News
peopleExclusive: Maryum and Hana Ali share their stories of the family man behind the boxing gloves
Arts and Entertainment
John Hurt will voice Prince Bolkonsky in Radio 4's War and Peace
radioRadio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
News
ebooksNow available in paperback
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Argyll Scott International: Service Desk Analyst

£20000 - £22000 per annum: Argyll Scott International: Service Desk Analyst Re...

Argyll Scott International: 2x Service Desk Analyst

£20000 - £22000 per annum: Argyll Scott International: Service Desk Analyst Re...

Recruitment Genius: Senior Execution Trader

£30000 - £250000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A global Rolling Spot FX, Comm...

Citifocus Ltd: ACA - Financial Reporting

£Attractive Package: Citifocus Ltd: Chartered accountant (ACA or CPA), must be...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up