Do I need renovation insurance?
The answer to this question typically rests on two main factors:
- the nature and extent of the renovation project you are planning for your home; and
- the attitude and policy of your current home insurers.
Many insurers, for instance, exclude cover for renovation work that extends much beyond simple redecoration or non-structural refurbishment. Any project which involves knocking down walls or adding an extension, therefore, might not be covered.
What is the demand for home renovations?
The current state of the housing market in the UK seems to discourage the sale or purchase of homes – instead, many property owners are looking to renovate the homes they already own.
This is supported by statistics from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), as reported by Landlord News on the 15th of September 2015, in an article describing the large number of applications for building works to create attic bedrooms, basements, kitchen extensions and side returns.
What does renovation insurance do?
Put simply, renovation insurance restores the cover and protection you are likely to want for your home throughout the duration of any renovation works.
Where can I get it?
Just as the name suggests, renovation insurance is designed to meet a specific purpose during an out of the ordinary time in the life of your home.
It might be described as a niche product, therefore, standing alone and quite separate from your main home insurance policy.
As it is a niche product, you might want to arrange it through a specialist insurance provider, such as us here at GSI Insurance.
What does it cover?
The precise extent of your renovation insurance may of course vary from one insurance policy to another. The following, however, are likely to be some of the features common to this kind of cover:
- cover for work in progress and any structural renovation – this may or may not include the risk of structural damage to the existing property as a result of the building works;
- cover for the loss or damage of building materials, plant, equipment and tools used during the work in progress;
- public liability indemnity is an especially important consideration whilst building works are in progress and is designed to offer protection against claims from visitors to your site or members of the public who may be injured or have their property damaged – and given the potential scale of such claims, cover is typically arranged for at least £1 million;
- if you choose to move elsewhere for the duration of the renovation, your empty property is especially vulnerable to the unwelcome attention of thieves, vandals and others – that is why renovation insurance typically covers these additional risks to an unoccupied property;
- even with the most careful planning and management of the building works, schedules may overrun and you may want renovation insurance sufficiently flexible to be extended if that need arises.
One of the keys to arranging the renovation insurance you need, therefore, is the ability to tailor it to meet your particular needs and requirements. Further reading: Guide to Property Renovation.