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Hot tub claims almost tripled in 2020

Home insurance claims involving hot tubs almost tripled during 2020(1), according to figures released by Aviva.

Analysis of Aviva’s UK claims data reveals a year-on-year increase of 188%, in relation to accidental damage claims for hot tubs in 2020.

Scenarios included a grass strimmer bursting an inflatable tub, birds pecking holes in a spa cover and an engagement ring ripping a tub lining.

Many people bought hot tubs in 2020... Unfortunately this appears to have led to all manner of mishaps.
Kelly Whittington, Property Claims Director for Aviva

In addition, accidental damage claims for items dropped in or knocked off the side of hot tubs in the UK have also increased in recent years by 213%(2), with mobile phones topping the list. Further claims were received for hearing aids, watches and tablets.

The figures are mirrored by reports of UK hot tub sales soaring by more than 1,000% in 2020(3). Aviva also received a small number of claims for stolen hot tubs. In many cases, deflated spas were stolen from garages and outbuildings, although some brazen thieves took hot tubs directly from customers’ gardens. 

Kelly Whittington, Property Claims Director for Aviva says: “Many people bought hot tubs in 2020, while others took their spas out of storage, so they could enjoy holidays at home. Unfortunately this appears to have led to all manner of mishaps, both with the hot tubs themselves and items dropped in them.

A short lapse of concentration can easily lead to an unfortunate incident.
Kelly Whittington, Property Claims Director for Aviva

“Many residents will be staying in the UK again this year, so hot tubs and garden accessories are likely to be very popular again. While it’s great that people are enjoying themselves at home, we’d encourage them to take care when using and storing their hot tubs, as well as being cautious with anything used around them. As our data reveals, a short lapse of concentration can easily lead to an unfortunate incident.

“Now is also a good opportunity for people to review their home insurance, to make sure it meets their needs.. Accidental damage cover is an optional add-on with many policies and can provide peace of mind against those moments of misfortune.”

Aviva has the following guidance to help customers avoid hot-tub incidents

  • Think about where you position your hot tub. Customers have reported accidents where tubs have been damaged by glass panes from greenhouses, falling parasols, and even people tripping over them.
  • Be careful with jewellery and watches. Not only can the items themselves be damaged by the water, customers have reported ripping the lining of hot tubs with their jewellery.
  • Review your cover. As the name suggests, ‘accidental damage’ insurance provides peace of mind for unexpected accidents and can cover incidents such as a burst hot tub or a phone which has taken a dip. This is often an optional add-on to home insurance and cover levels can vary, so check with your provider.
  • Keep phones away from the water. Tempting as it can be to scroll and take pool-side selfies, phones account for the vast majority of accidental damage claims for items dropped in hot tubs.
  • Take care with tools. Aviva has received claims for hot tubs damaged by spades, strimmers and screwdrivers.
  • Put away your hot tub if it’s not going to be used for a while – and keep it safe and secure. In spite of their bulk, it’s not unheard of for hot tubs to be stolen.
  • Be careful where you store your hot tub. Look out for any nails or sharp edges which could catch inflatable parts, covers or linings. Also be mindful that home insurance policies often have exclusions for damage caused by vermin. Similarly, insurance is designed for unexpected events, so issues due to wear and tear or mechanical failure would not be covered.
  • Be mindful of any policy limits for items kept in gardens or stored in garages and outbuildings. The limit is usually lower than belongings kept in the main home, so if you have an expensive hot tub, check your home insurance policy to make sure the cover meets your needs.
  • Be careful with lids and accessories. These can cost several hundreds of pounds to be replaced.

-Ends-

Media enquiries

Sarah Poulter

Group External Communications

Notes to editors:

1). Figures according to Aviva claims data: UK home insurance ‘accidental damage’ claims for hot tubs in 2019, compared to 2020.

2). Figures according to Aviva claims data: UK home insurance ‘accidental damage’ claims for items dropped in hot tubs, comparing the annual average 2016-19 against 2020.

3). According to eBay, as reported in ThisIsMoney.co.uk.

Notes to editors:

  • For information on how Aviva is helping our people, customers and communities impacted by COVID-19 visit: www.aviva.com/covid-19-our-response/
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