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Home insurance claims dominated by pipes and plumbing

Theft lies in fourth place and fire, which covers damage from small cigarette burns to major house fires, is in fifth place on the list which combines the number of claims made for both buildings and contents insurance.

Top Home Insurance Claims:

1 Escaping Water

2 Storm

3 Accidental Damage

4 Theft

5 Fire

6 Subsidence

7 Flood

8 Malicious Damage

9 Impact Damage

10 Freeze

Although a leaking pipe could be a relatively minor issue, in comparison to fire and flood, it can ultimately cause a major problem which costs an average of £3,500.  At this time of year a frozen pipe in the loft can quickly become a burst pipe. This can cause water to gush through the house, ruining furnishings and belongings along the way and in some cases bringing ceilings down. For the homeowner this can mean months of disruption while their house is dried out and repaired.

The data also breaks down the top claims by buildings and contents insurance. Storm damage is the top claim under buildings cover – with weather-damaged roofs, lost tiles and collapsed chimneys being the major cause of damage. While for contents insurance, accidental damage tops the list – with mishaps to laptops, mobile phones and televisions being the most claimed for items.

Caroline Cooper, director of property claims at Aviva, said: "While freeze, floods and storm damage have hit the headlines in recent months and kept our claims teams busy, it’s no surprise to see that it’s the more normal everyday problems that can prompt most calls from customers.  What can start as a small leak, or a frozen pipe, can lead to serious damage to ceilings, floors and your prized possessions if left un-checked or unnoticed over time.

"If you do find a leak then it’s worth getting it checked out by a plumber as soon as possible to prevent the problem getting any worse  and, of course, ring your insurers who can fix any damage caused by leaking water."

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