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What is a Flood Risk Report?

Zenyx Griffiths

Written by Reviewed by Mike Ashton

8th Sep 2021 (Last updated on 22nd Apr 2022) 3 minute read

A Flood Risk Report will reveal any potential flood risk for the property you’re buying.

The Flood Risk Report won’t provide a physical inspection as it’s based on historical flood data from previous events.

Even if the property you’re buying isn’t situated near a river, surface water, groundwater and overflowing sewers are common causes of flooding.

This article will cover the following:
  1. How to Get a Flood Risk Report?
  2. What Does it Reveal?
  3. Is Your Property at Risk of Flooding?
  4. Flood Risk Survey
  5. Flood Insurance
  6. Explore Our Next Guide

How to Get a Flood Risk Report?

Once you’ve appointed a conveyancer, they’ll order conveyancing searches which are made up of Local Authority, Environmental and Water and Drainage searches.

Your Environmental Search will reveal if the property is situated on a flood plain. Your conveyancing solicitor will then order a Flood Risk Report if they think it needs further inspection.

They’ll order the search with the Land Registry to learn more in-depth information. The report costs £9 and will give a full rundown of any flood risks in relation to your property.

What Does it Reveal?

A Flood Risk Indicator Result will reveal:

  • Which flooding zones your property may fall under, whether it's built on a flood plain or within an area that regularly floods.
  • The likelihood of your property flooding ranked from low to high risk for both sea and river flooding.
  • How this information was found and finalised. The document will reveal where the data is from (most likely Environmental Agency and Natural Resources).

You may want to check flood risk maps, speak to locals in the area or even talk to a flood risk consultant.

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Is Your Property at Risk of Flooding?

Before obtaining a survey or report, you may also want to check for the obvious signs of flooding or flood risk. Check if the house you want to buy is near a river, stream, lake or any body of water, and do your research online. Government agencies issue flood maps with warnings on areas prone to flooding.

England: The Environment Agency issues flood risk maps.

Wales: Natural Resources Wales have long term flood risk maps.

Scotland: Scottish Environment Protection Agency issues a selection of maps with areas prone to flooding

Northern Ireland: The Department of the Environment issues an interactive map viewer.

You can also get in touch with the relevant agency to get a flood history report about a particular property. If your property is at risk from flooding, you'll be able to sign up for alerts to get warnings of flood risks as any occur.

Speak to The Locals

As useful as online flood maps can be, they don’t always account for individual homes. Speak with the owners of neighbouring houses to find out if there had been any previous incidents that might not show up on a map. If that fails, you can always try looking at local council records.

Speak to Your Estate Agent

One of the first things you should do is ask your estate agent if your area is prone to risks like flooding. A good estate agent will find out from the seller if there is anything about the property that will affect the buyer’s decision to purchase it.

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Flood Risk Survey

If you have checked the flood risk maps, consulted the locals and still have questions, you can always hire a professional flood risk consultant. This can cost a few hundred pounds, but they will give you an extensive and accurate indication of:

  • Risk of flooding
  • Different types of flooding
  • Which direction the water would come from
  • The timescale of flooding in your area

Both the RICS HomeBuyer Report and RICS Building Survey may advise on any flooding history if this is known to the surveyor. However, it is worth getting a full flood risk survey so you know the exact risk to your property.

Flood Insurance

Home insurance will be more expensive in flood risk areas, but the alternative cost of repairs will be far more expensive to deal with.

There are even government flood insurance schemes to help make the cover more affordable, too.

In general, your location and the value of the property will determine how much you pay. You can check home insurance options to compare and save on different providers.

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Explore Our Next Guide

We hope this guide has helped you successfully prepare for negotiating a house price after receiving a house survey. This completes our conveyancing guide, but we have many more informative and helpful guides. To learn more read our guide to house removals.

Zenyx Griffiths

Before Compare My Move, Zenyx once wrote lifestyle and entertainment articles for the online magazine, Society19 as well as news articles for Ffotogallery.

Mike Ashton

Reviewed by Mike Ashton

Director, Cambridge Building Surveyors

With over 20 years of experience in the property surveying industry, Mike Ashton is now the director at Cambridge Building Surveyors.

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