Listed Building Insurance
Choose a specialist who can protect the architectural or historical significance of your property.
What is a listed building?
A listed building is one of architectural or historical significance that is protected by listing marks. The building is protected from damage, neglect and structural changes without permission so that it can be enjoyed by future generations. Typically, any property constructed before 1700 is listed.
Contrary to common belief, a listing mark is not designed to prevent changes to the building. Only to ensure that consent is given before any changes are carried out, to preserve the features that are of special historical or architectural interest.
Usually a building must be at least 30 years old before it is considered eligible to be recognised as a listed home, however, anyone can nominate a property to be listed. This protection system operates under The Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990. A programme of listing priorities exists for buildings that have already been identified as at risk.
Grades of listed buildings explained
Because a number of buildings will sometimes be recorded in a single listing, the exact number of listed properties in the UK is not known. It is estimated to be around 500,000. There are varying categories for England and Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.
Listed buildings in England and Wales:
- Grade II - 92% of all listed buildings are Grade II buildings of special architectural or historical interest. This the most likely grade of listing for homeowners.
- Grade II* - 5.5% of listed buildings are Grade II*. These buildings are particularly important and deemed to be of more than special interest.
- Grade I - Just 2.5% of listed buildings are Grade I. These buildings are of exceptional interest.
Listed buildings in Scotland:
- Category A – Of national or international architectural importance, or a fine example of some particular period.
- Category B – Of regional importance, or a major example of some particular period or style which may have been altered.
- Category C – Buildings of local importance, or a lesser example of any period or style, as originally constructed or moderately altered; and traditional buildings.
Listed buildings in Northern Ireland:
- Grade A - Buildings of great architectural importance, and the least altered examples of a particular style or period.
- Grade B+ - A building that may merit grade A because of exceptional features, interiors or environmental qualities but has an incomplete design.
- Grade B - Buildings of local importance and good examples of a particular period or style, where a degree of alteration or imperfection is acceptable.
Maintaining a listed property
If you own a listed property, you are responsible for its maintenance. This can be a difficult task, considering that many of the techniques used to build the house may have fallen out of use. For this, you will need a specialist contractor. Traditionally, specialist works are more expensive, which is a primary reason for seeking specialist house insurance for a listed property.
Before you undertake any work on your listed house you must seek permission from your local authority. This applies to both internal and external changes to the property. Your local council, and in some cases a body like Historic England, will ultimately decide whether you can go ahead with renovations or repair work. This is to ensure that the aspects of the listed property which are of special interest are not lost.
Listing covers the complete interior and exterior of the listed building and can also extend to fixtures. Common difficulties for listed home owners include changing doors, window glazing, outbuildings and even fitting burglar alarms.
Insuring your listed building
Listed properties tend to have a greater rebuild cost than standard homes, meaning that they can be subject to larger insurance premiums. Therefore, working with a specialist insurance provider such as HomeProtect will ensure that you can achieve the best possible quote for your circumstances. If in doubt, contact a Quantity Surveyor to arrange a Professional Rebuilding Cost Assessment.
To reduce the risk of claiming on your property, you should carry out a regular inspection of your listed property, keeping your eyes peeled for damage to the roof, drainage issues and damp patches.
Insurance For Listed Buildings
- HomeProtect can insure all listed grades and categories in the UK
- £500K rebuild cost, taking the use of original building materials and methods into account (more available if your property needs it)
- Discount available for combined Buildings & Contents
- Public liability up to £5 million available
- Access to a 24/7 claims helpline