Preparing for flooding

Practical help

What you can do to prepare – a quick checklist

Here are some simple steps to prepare for flooding – this list is not exhaustive.

  1. Make sure you have the correct and right amount of insurance cover – please check your building and contents or business policy with your insurance company.
  2. Take detailed photos of your property and contents NOW before any flood occurs – your insurance company may be able to use this as evidence to properly assess damage to your property.
  3. Sign up to SEPA’s flood warning scheme, this will give you warning of possible flooding and where it may occur.
  4. Find out how to turn off your gas, electricity and water supplies.
  5. Keep a hardcopy list of useful telephone numbers (including your GP details, insurance claim line & policy number).
  6. Put together an emergency flood kit.
  7. Consider buying flood protection products for your home.
  8. Think about the needs of children, babies, elderly, the disabled at home and your pets. This will include thinking about medication needs, toys and nappies etc.
  9. Don’t forget to check on your neighbours.
  10. Make an action plan to use in the event of a flood. This will include such as:
    • Identify and list urgent actions in priority of value.
    • What will need to be moved upstairs and will you need help.
    • How are you going to prevent water entering the property.
    • Make sure you have the means to keep warm, food, flasks, etc.
    • Mobile phone chargers, computer data and photographs stored safely.
    • Most things can be replaced, family photographs, often cannot – move them to safety in good time.
    • Move your car to higher ground, if it is safe to do so

Emergency flood kit

Being prepared will make things so much easier if your home is ever flooded. Putting together a flood kit ‘grab bag’ is a key way of minimising the risks and surviving the worst, if you choose to stay in your home or are evacuated to a rest centre.

Essentials if you are evacuated to a rest centre:



What you should also consider:

Flood Kit Considerations

Roles & responsibilities

The responsibility for protecting your home from flooding is first and foremost yours. However, below are the responsibilities of some key organisations so you know who to contact and how they can help:

The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)

  • SEPA is the flood warning authority for Scotland
  • Check out their flood maps to show where flooding may impact
  • Sign up to Floodline for advanced notice of flooding
  • Has advice and information about how to be prepared

Your local authority

  • Plans, implements and maintains flood protection measures
  • Clears and repairs watercourses to reduce flood risk
  • Is responsible for gully (gutter and drain covers) maintenance for local roads
  • Works with emergency responders when flooding happens
  • Let them know if watercourses are blocked with debris or flood defences are tampered with
  • Contact your local authority for further advice

Scottish Water

  • Is responsible for the drainage of surface water from roofs and paved ground surface within the property boundary
  • Helps protect properties from flooding caused by overflowing or blocked sewers
  • Visit www.scottishwater.co.uk/flooding
  • Call Customer Helpline on 0345 601 8855

The Scottish Flood Forum

  • Is a charitable organisation which supports individuals and communities at risk of flooding and that have flooded. We specialise in flood recovery and resilience – and have many years experience in these areas.
  • This website gives more information about how we can help you and your community.

Finding affordable insurance

FloodRe, a joint government and insurance industry scheme launched during April 2017 to help qualifying properties find affordable insurance. If you are renewing your quote, or have been refused insurance due to previous flooding in your area, now is the time to shop around. When you phone your insurance company, make sure you ask them two questions:

  • Are you part of the FloodRe Scheme?
  • Is my property eligible for the FloodRe Scheme?

If you are eligible, make sure you keep shopping around until you find an insurance company who is part of the scheme. See their website and watch this video for more information and see a list of insurance companies who are part of the scheme.
Download the FloodRe PDF leaflet

If you are still struggling to find insurance for your home, do get in touch and we will see if we can help.


Protecting your property

Protecting against flooding

Downloadable guides and documents

For a downloadable overview of the information found on this page, please click here.

Having a plan in place that all your family is aware of, before flooding happens can be a real help, making sure you all know what to do if the worst happens. Please download our Household flood plan leaflet to give you more help and advice.

If you are considering what you can do to protect your property then our guide can help.

SFF - Ready For Flooding

Ready For Flooding (PDF)

SFF - Household Flood Plan

Household Flood Plan (PDF)

SFF - Flood Protection Guide

Flood Protection Guide (PDF)