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Holidaymakers 'return to disaster'

Millions of people from the UK return home from their relaxing holiday to find their property damaged or robbed, according to new research.

Halifax Home Insurance found that people returning from holiday this year will find damage to their property which will collectively cost them £2.3 billion.

Figures show that a quarter of a million holiday makers return to burgled homes, costing £820 million to put right.

Similarly, water leaks cost returning holidaymakers £960 million to repair. Children left to their own devices while their parents are away also manage to cost £40 million worth of damage.

"Home disasters can be extremely distressing at the best of times, so returning to one after a relaxing holiday would certainly bring you back down to earth with a bump, so having adequate home insurance cover to protect your property," explained Vicky Emmott, the senior manager of underwriting at Halifax Home Insurance.

"As well as making sure they are insured there are lots of other practical things that holidaymakers can do to protect their properties whilst they're away. For example, ensuring that the heating comes on during the winter can prevent pipes from bursting."

Earlier this year, a 17-year-old girl from Co Durham hosted a party while her parents were away which is estimated to have caused £20,000 worth of damage.