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UK's neighbours from hell costing £157m a year

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UK's neighbours from hell costing £157m a year

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Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Communities and also in Finance, Housing

UK's neighbours from hell costing 157m a year UK's neighbours from hell costing 157m a year

Image: Housing via Shutterstock

One in 10 UK homeowners has claimed or will need to claim on their home insurance as a result of the actions of their neighbours, research has revealed.

MoneySuperMarket found that the most common reason for homeowners making a neighbour-related claim on their home insurance was because of property damage from unruly gardens and overgrown trees (29%).

'Lack of upkeep' of the house next door is also an issue, with 26% of those who have claimed on their home insurance saying damage was caused by neighbours neglecting their property, such as leaving guttering clogged and not repairing loose roof tiles.

Of those who believe they will have to claim in the future, 29% say it will be because of damage their neighbour causes to shared walls and fences.

And 22% who have had to claim did so because of a gas leak or burst pipe problems on a neighbours’ property.

With claims typically adding around £50 to the average home insurance premium, the potential increase to those homeowners affected by nightmare neighbours would be £157 million, according to MoneySuperMarket.

One in eight (12%) UK homeowners admit their neighbours will have a major impact when it comes to selling or renting-out their home.

Two fifths say their neighbours’ house looks unsightly, with another 38% saying rubbish is left in clear view, and for 37% their neighbours’ anti-social behaviour is an issue.

A third of homeowners are concerned about obvious structural damage and subsidence on their neighbours’ property, and over a quarter have issues about pest problems caused by neighbours.

Another gripe that gets 25% of homeowners’ blood boiling is unsightly vehicles parked in a neighbour’s driveway.

Brit’s top five traits of an annoying neighbour are:

1. Noise nuisance.
2. Unkempt garden.
3. Uncontrolled pets.
4. Out of control children.
5. Nosiness.

MoneySuperMarket's Kevin Pratt said: “While it might not be as traumatic as the dramas found on Coronation Street and Albert Square, a lot of us have put up with nightmare neighbours at some point and, let’s be honest, it isn’t a nice experience.

“Whether intentionally or unintentionally, if the behaviour of a neighbour causes damage to your home, you need to know you won’t suffer financial hardship as a result. Ensuring you have adequate buildings insurance is essential to guarantee that one of your most important assets – your home – is protected. It’s just a shame that something your neighbour does could lead you to have to make a claim and suffer higher insurance premiums because of it.

“When attempting to deal with your annoying neighbours, it’s crucial to keep your cool and not lose your temper. Having an informal chat with your neighbour and outlining the problem can often be the best solution. However, if you’re not getting anywhere, perhaps speak to your local council or Citizens Advice, who should be able to offer support.”

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