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Considering an extension? You could need separate renovation insurance

Property renovation may be a great way of breathing life back into a tired looking home, whilst at the same time increasing its potential capital value. Bespoke renovation insurance policies are available to accommodate. Renovation, remodelling or simple redecoration projects, therefore, may be attractive to:

  • home owners looking to extend or simply spruce up the property in which they already live;
  • property investors looking for opportunities to renovate a building before its onward sale; or
  • landlords looking for suitable buy to let property to buy and refurbish or to renovate existing accommodation.

In short, there are any number of reasons for wanting to renovate a property and there is certainly no shortage of opportunities to acquire them – as the listings on Property to Renovate may testify.

Renovation insurance

Whether you already own or are about to buy property, of course, one of your immediate considerations is likely to be home or landlords insurance to protect your investment.

During the course of any renovations, however, standard home insurance or landlords insurance may not be sufficient – depending on the extent of the renovations.

If all you are proposing is a lick of paint and relatively minor repairs and refurbishment, it might simply be a question of keeping your current insurers in the picture. If anything more extensive – an extension to the property, major remodelling or structural alterations are involved, however, your current insurer’s approval is almost certain to be required.

The response may be to increase your premiums or to reduce the level of cover currently provided by your normal insurers. In order to avoid such measure, an alarming number of property owners may simply fail to do this – with the effect that their insurance becomes no longer valid.

The property news service, Property Wire, for example, suggests that more than a half of UK property owners who commission an extension to be built fail to inform their insurers and risk their insurance cover becoming invalid.

What does it cover?

This perilous state of affairs is something you might avoid altogether by contacting us here at GSI Insurance and arranging comprehensive renovation insurance to keep your property fully covered for the during of any building works. The policies are sufficiently flexible for you to extend cover, if necessary – because the works overshoot their intended completion schedule, for example.

Such policies typically provide cover not only for the risk of damage to the existing structure and fabric of the property, but also extend to the potentially very costly event of public liability claims from anyone injured or suffering property loss or damage as a result of your renovations. Indemnity for such public liability claims is typically no less than £1 million – and may be considerably more.

In addition, you might want to ensure that any renovations insurance you arrange also covers theft, loss or damage of materials and supplies on site during the building works, together with plant, machinery and tools used in the process.

Popular and attractive as it might be, therefore, it may be equally apparent that any foray into the world of property renovation might go hand in glove with very careful consideration of your insurance needs.

Further reading: Guide to property renovation

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