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Subsidence View - June 2015

Subsidence View: Issue 1 June 2015

Welcome to first edition of Subsidence View. In this issue we take a retrospective look at subsidence numbers in 2014 and take an early look at what 2015 has in store.
Last year- As Insurers are all too aware, many areas of the country went through one of the wettest and stormiest winters on record in 2013/2014. South East and Central England saw more than double the average rainfall and England and Wales generally was the wettest since 1766. The combination of this and the fairly average British summer weather which followed meant that subsidence claim numbers reported to the market were 17,500 - considerably less than the previous 3 years average of 25,000.
So what of 2015?- 12 months on, we have seen a complete turnaround in winter weather, with the driest winter for 86 years followed by the sunniest April on record. It's 9 years since the UK insurance industry experienced a significant and costly surge of subsidence claims, so could 2015 be the next one? Well history has shown what has gone so far will have little relevance to the final subsidence numbers we will see in 2015. The surge of 2003 followed a prolonged wet and cold winter, whereas dry winters have been followed by summers which have yielded much lower claim numbers. What we do know is that an extended period of exceptionally hot, dry weather between June and September, particularly in the clay soil areas of the south east, will be the deciding factor.
Following the fairly average weather in May, the MORECS measure of Soil Moisture Deficit currently shows 110, most closely tracking 2009 and 2010 and ahead of 2003.
There is more settled weather to come according to the Met office 30 day forecast:
Tuesday 16 Jun 2015 to Thursday 25 Jun 2015: There will be a lot of dry and fine weather at first, with many parts seeing long sunny spells and light winds, although it will feel cooler than of late…
UK Outlook for Friday 26 Jun 2015 to Friday 10 Jul 2015: Generally settled with plenty of dry and fine weather likely across many southern areas at first, however, cloudier, breezier conditions are expected in the northwest… These more unsettled conditions may then spread south through the period to affect other parts of the UK at times. This trend continues into early July, with just a hint of more settled and drier conditions thereafter…
Our current prediction for 2015 is for a return to average numbers seen prior to 2014, but we will continue to monitor conditions and refine our view as the summer develops.

Building Validation Solutions are developing a new and innovative approach to handling subsidence claims. If you would like to talk to us about how we could make a difference for you and your customers, please contact:

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