Insurance News Archive
Rics issues subsidence warning
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) is encouraging homeowners to keep an eye on their properties as a winter of drought followed by a hot summer could result in subsidence.
Subsidence is brought about by a period of high temperatures and low rainfall and is a major threat to houses that are built with shallow foundations.
It is more common in houses constructed before 1965 and particularly those built during the Edwardian and Victorian eras.
Rics is now urging people to check their properties for evidence of cracking, with cracks over 3mm considered as serious and requiring immediate action.
"House owners should be prepared for delays as premature action can cause further problems and insurers will usually want to monitor walls for a season to assess a pattern," comments Rics spokesperson Rory Ilott.
Actions to permanently correct subsidence are drastic and involve deepening the foundations of a property in the process known as underpinning.
Rics is advising homeowners to immediately notify their insurance company or landlord to make a claim if they discover a crack.
15 May 2006