According to price comparison site, thousands of UK homeowners are applying for home insurance for the first time in the wake of the recent catastrophic floods and storms.

Applications from residents in the worst-affected areas – Sheffield, Doncaster, Hull, the West Midlands and parts of Scotland – surged by up to 300% immediately after the flooding, as compared to the previous month, May 2007, on the price comparison website.

Richard Mason, director of insurance at, said: The increase in the number of people applying from areas affected by heavy rain is no surprise. Clearly, homeowners who narrowly escaped the floods this time have realized that without any insurance cover they could be left footing bills for tens of thousands of pounds in the future.

The surge in applications comes amid reports that insurers are considering the possibility of blacklisting up to one million homes built on flood plains. According to the Environment Agency, approximately 2.3 million UK homes are built on flood plains.

Mr Mason added: For now, insurers say they will still abide by the terms of a deal they reached with the government in 2002. This states that insurers will continue to offer cover for those already insured and take on new business where defenses are in place or planned.