Home renovation insurance
Keeping covered when you're undertaking a renovation project
If you don’t tell your insurer that your home is undergoing renovation, you may find that your policy is invalid in the event of a claim. This applies whether or not you continue to live in your home while the work is being done.
This is because the risk of something unexpected happening to your home and its contents increases considerably when you’ve ‘got the builders in’.
Here at HomeProtect we’re happy to insure homes that are undergoing renovation. All you need to do is let us know the value of the contract. If it’s a substantial project you may then need to pay an extra, one-off fee.
We also ask that you can prove that your contractors are reputable (good scores on ‘Check a Trade’ or a member of the Federation of Master Builders), hold a level of liability cover (minimum £1 million), have a CAR (Contractors All Risk policy) in place and have signed a clear contract outlining responsibilities.
Home improvements and insurance
Your insurer needs to know about any renovations, extensions or other structural alterations that can affect the rebuild cost of your house. This is to help you ensure that you always have the right level of cover. As well as this you should think of the implications of whether the home is occupied or vacant.
Remember, once the renovation is complete, you should check that the total sum insured covers the value of rebuilding your extended property. You should also make sure that you have sufficient contents cover to replace household items, and have specified high risk or high value additions to your renovated home.
What does renovation insurance cover?
You need to update your provider of your home insurance needs before building work begins. Renovation cover should include:
- The existing structure and parts of the building that are not being renovated.
- Public liability insurance – in case someone is injured at your property while the renovation occurs, however, it excludes any injuries that occur as a result of the renovation work.
- Malicious damage – This is not covered if the property is left unoccupied during the renovation work.
- Structural damage protection – in case of problems such as subsidence, on the basis that the structural damage is not caused by the renovation work and only if the property is not unoccupied.
- Cover for fire, earthquake or explosion, provided it is not caused by the renovation work.
- Protection for your building if unoccupied.
Protecting people during renovations
Make sure that your current policy includes public liability insurance, covering you if someone is injured at the property during building works. At HomeProtect, we include public liability insurance up to £5 million as standard.
Once your project is underway it’s also a good idea to keep your insurer fully informed of any developments concerning your property, especially if it becomes empty. This can be crucial in preventing delays if you need to make a claim.
Not making structural changes but need cover for maintenance and repair work? Find out more about DIY insurance.
What our customers say
Your questions answered
How can I calculate the rebuild cost of my renovated property?
Consulting a chartered surveyor is the surest way to receive an accurate rebuild cost. In fact, if your home is using non-standard construction materials or you are renovating a listed building then you will need to do this. That said, for standard construction houses, you can use the free online BCIS Rebuild calculator.
What is the difference between a cosmetic change vs a renovation project?
For the purposes of the HomeProtect renovations insurance policy, cosmetic changes include non-structural changes to the property such as redecorating, replacing kitchen units, or laying new flooring. If you plan to change the internal plumbing, gas pipes or electrical fixtures then this is NOT classed as cosmetic.
My unusual, or heritage or listed building home is going to be renovated, can you insure me?
Yes, absolutely. You may want to check that your contractor is familiar with, and has references from previous renovation projects involving specialist or traditional materials. In the case of a listed building, don’t forget to also obtain planning consent from your local planning officer before any work starts.
The renovation project has already started, can you insure my property?
Yes, no problem