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New tech product promises water damage risk reduction

New tech product promises water damage risk reduction | Insurance Business UK

New tech product promises water damage risk reduction
With technology getting smarter by leaps and bounds, there seems to be an app or solution for just about anything. For the insurance sector, the surge in new products ranges from telematics to chatbots, as well as advancements that mitigate risk.

The recent European Utility Week, held in Amsterdam, saw the launch of a smart solution that promises to reduce the incidence of water damage – benefiting both insurers and consumers. Smarter home energy products developer geo has rolled out a connected leak detection system called WaterLock.

Here’s what the water shut-off system does:
  • Uses sensors to detect standing water, excess humidity, and freezing conditions
  • Automatically closes the main water supply to minimise, if not avoid, damage
  • Connects wirelessly to the WaterLock hub and the cloud, allowing activation even from outside the property
  • Works alongside a smartphone app, through which information may be shared (e.g. among tenants and landlords)
  • Can supply data directly to insurers and property management firms, with the user’s permission   

“There are some obvious cost- and hassle-saving benefits to consumers using WaterLock,” commented geo chief executive Patrick Caiger-Smith. “However, we have also designed the solution very much with the insurance industry in mind.”

Caiger-Smith explained: “The constant, connected risk assessment and data gathering that goes hand in hand with WaterLock means that the incidence of damage from water loss is vastly reduced. This, in turn should reduce risk for the insurer and lower premiums for the customer.”

Citing data from the Association of British Insurers, geo said the insurance sector pays out £2.5 million every day to UK policyholders alone for escape of water claims. Yet, according to a survey by The Consumer View GmbH, the amount covers less than half of the actual cost to consumers.

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