Rising Insurance Prices Hit Homes in Surrey and Scotland

By Moneysupermarket.com, PRNE
Monday, April 25, 2011

Homeowners in Dorking, Surrey pay the Price in the Postcode Lottery With Average Premiums up 46 per cent since January 2010

CHESTER, England, April 26, 2011 - Homeowners in Dorking, Surrey and in Edinburgh and Glasgow
have seen the biggest rises in the cost of their home insurance premiums
according to the analysis of 3.4 million quotations by Britain's number one
comparison site moneysupermarket.com (www.moneysupermarket.com/).

The analysis reveals the UK's postcode hotspots most affected
by rising home insurance premiums. Residents of Dorking, Surrey, have seen an
average 46 per cent increase to the cost of their home insurance premiums
over 14 months, with cover rising from an average GBP119 to GBP174, or by 15
per day.

Homeowners in the city centre of Edinburgh and in Milngavie,
Glasgow, have experienced similar increases (45 and 40 per cent
respectively). This is in comparison to the national average which has seen
an increase of 6 per cent, or 2.5 pence per day, to the typical cost for
buildings and contents cover. Greater London postcodes have been the most
affected, representing five of the top twenty hardest hit areas.

The most likely factors causing an increase in home insurance
premium prices include, heightened cases of fraudulent claims, the cost of
repairs from extreme weather damages and an increase in crime levels.*

Julie Owens, head of home insurance at moneysupermarket.com
(www.moneysupermarket.com/home-insurance/) said: "The cost of insuring
homes in the UK is steadily on the increase. Unfortunately for consumers,
things look set to get worse with the increase in prices unlikely to slow
down in the coming years. As our research shows, some areas have been harder
hit by rising premiums than others; unfortunately, postcodes can dramatically
affect how much people pay for their home insurance premium.

"Additionally, if your property is classified as being in a
'high-risk' area - whether for crime, flooding or even fraudulent claims - it
will be reflected in your insurance premiums. Living in a more affluent area
will also increase premiums as property and contents values will generally be
higher. Insurers use postcodes as a part of the overall risk factors when
calculating premiums. Although there is very little you can do about the
postcode in which you live, except move house, there are steps you can take
to reduce your premiums, such as, installing a good home security system and
security lighting.

"With this in mind, we urge anyone looking for a home
insurance policy to shop around using a comparison website and ensure that
they aren't paying over the odds for their cover. The average saving for
consumers using moneysupermarket.com to buy their home insurance premium is

moneysupermarket.com's home insurance top tips:

- Change the locks - If you've moved to a new home you never
know who might still have a key. It is important to maintain locks.
Five-lever mortise locks are recommended for external doors while windows
should ideally have two bolt locks.

- Install a good home security system - Sometimes there are
alarm systems that might be preferred by an insurer. The NACOSS standard
alarm can cut premiums with some companies by 7.5 per cent.

- Time-switch lights - Your home is more vulnerable to theft
when you are not around. Time-switch lights will give the impression that you
are at home.

- If you are away - Remember to cancel newspaper and milk
deliveries and ask someone you can trust to open and close the curtains and
collect mail.

- Keys - Don't leave them in obvious places such as under a
doormat. Also beware of 'hook n crook' thefts - where keys are left so close
to a door that a burglar can simply hook them through a letterbox and open
the door.

- Install security lighting - illuminate your visitors for
their safety as well as your own. Unwelcome visitors are less likely to
loiter if they're 'in the spotlight'.

- Join a neighbourhood watch campaign - this can help to
reduce your premium if you inform the home insurance company of your
participation in a scheme. It can reduce your premiums by up to 5 per cent.

- Avoid frozen and burst pipes - If you think pipes are
frozen, turn off water at the valve and header tank to cut down the water
that can escape.

- Fire - Fit a smoke alarm and take simple steps to avoid
accidents. Most fires in the home are caused by smoking or cooking; never
smoke in bed, don't leave cigarettes lying around and don't leave cooking
unattended. Other fire tips include closing doors at night to contain fires,
check the home is safe before going to bed and keep matches away from

- Don't smoke - As covered above, the fire risk greatly
increases if you smoke cigarettes. Most insurers will now ask if you are a

- Think about your cover - Do you really need accidental
damage cover? This can increase premiums by 25%. Think carefully about the
add-ons you need.

- Don't claim unless you need to - The fewer the claims, the
higher your no claims discount. So for minor issues that would be inexpensive
for you to cover with your own cash, think twice before making a claim.

Notes to editors:

Top 20 most affected postcodes in the UK for rising home insurance

     Postcode           Post Area          Price  Price      %      Daily
     District                               Year   Year  increase  increase
                                            2010   2011
       RH4               Dorking           GBP119 GBP174    46     GBP0.15
       EH9       Edinburgh (Inner city,    GBP144 GBP208    45     GBP0.18
                  Marchmont and Grange,
       G62         Glasgow (Milngavie)     GBP129 GBP181    40     GBP0.14
       SO23     Winchester (City Centre,   GBP111 GBP151    36     GBP0.11
                Abbotts Barton, Bar End,
               Highcliffe, Hyde, St Cross
                      (E), Winnall)
       HP2     Hemel Hempstead (Gaddesden  GBP115 GBP156    36     GBP0.11
                Row, Piccotts End, Grove
                    Hill, Adeyfield)
       EH3       Edinburgh (The New Town   GBP127 GBP170    34     GBP0.12
               area, The West End and the
                      Tollcross and
                  Fountainbridge areas)
       CM21          Sawbridgeworth        GBP131 GBP175    34     GBP0.12
       KT1        Kingston upon Thames,    GBP140 GBP186    33     GBP0.13
                      Hampton Wick
       GU52      Fleet (Church Crookham,   GBP126 GBP167    33     GBP0.11
                    Crookham Village)
       SW12      London (Balham, Clapham   GBP155 GBP205    32     GBP0.14
       BT9      Belfast (Malone, Lisburn   GBP120 GBP159    32     GBP0.11
                   Road, Taughmonagh,
       NW7     London (Mill Hill, Arkley)  GBP204 GBP268    32     GBP0.18
       FK15         Dunblane (Braco)       GBP141 GBP185    31     GBP0.12
        N1      London (Canonbury, Kings   GBP130 GBP170    31     GBP0.11
                Cross, Islington, Hoxton)
       HU14               Hull             GBP154 GBP199    29     GBP0.12
       BT79    Omagh (Drumlea, Glengawna,  GBP120 GBP154    29     GBP0.09
                   Gortin, Mountfield,
                 Plumbridge, Rosnamuck,
               Sheskinshule, Sixmilecross)
       SE11        London (Kennington)     GBP130 GBP167    28     GBP0.10
       SS12             Wickford           GBP139 GBP177    27     GBP0.10
       SW11    London (Battersea, Clapham  GBP152 GBP193    27     GBP0.11
       DA13        Gravesend (Meophan)     GBP156 GBP198    27     GBP0.12

Table based on 3.4milllion home insurance queries from 01/01/10 -






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