Hundreds of UK holiday homeowners in France found their properties under-insured by more than 50% in the wake of the storms and floods that hit last Christmas, says Holiday Homes Insurance.

The Hornchurch-based broker, part of Towergate Underwriting group, handled more than 1,000 claims totalling more than £1m as a result of the storms,

It says much of the under-insurance problem stemmed from the French practice of insuring the property based on its square footage – or what the owner paid for it – rather than rebuilding costs.