Renovating empty houses

Renovation insurance is essential for anyone planning refurbishment works to their house.
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Home insurance for empty homes being renovated

There are thousands of empty houses across the UK that are crying out for renovation. If you are searching for a home to buy and spot an empty property that interests you but isn't advertised for sale, your first step is to contact the Land Registry. This will let you find out who owns the house, or whether the building is part of a planning application via the local council.

If the house you have found is in a deprived area then you may face some challenges to secure the property from the council, who will be working to give new accommodation to existing residents in the area.

Alternatively, the council may welcoming offer to renovate a delapidated, disused property. There may even be an option to request a renovation grant, providing financial assistance for repairs. In this case, homeowners, landlords or tenants could renovate a property and return it to a suitable condition for residency.

Renovation grants are means-tested, so the amount you are eligible for is subject to your income. Typically, there is a maximum amount of £20,000 available for private residences. It is also often the case that the house must have been vacant for three years at a minimum.

In most cases, properties that can benefit from the renovation grant are in desperate need of being brought up to the Decent Homes standard. The local council involved will need to be provided with details of the work you intend to carry out, such as damp proofing, re-roofing, installation of heating and replacement of double glazing. You will also need to secure planning permission approval if you intend to extend the property.

In the case of landlords who have been unable to secure a tenancy for the past 12 months, there is the option to lease the house to council-nominated tenants instead. If you do this you could be eligible for an Empty Property grant which covers half of the renovation works, however, these tenancy agreements are often for five to ten years.


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Satisfied customers

A quality presentation of documentation and effective renewal at a similar premium to the previous year. Dealing with a family home which remains empty as owner in a residential home has emotional issues. The manner of renewal made it easier than it might have been. Trustpilot, 6 February 2017
Member of staff was helpful and understood my need to insure a vacant property undergoing renovation. Good insurance for a good price. Review Centre, 11 July 2017
The team member I spoke to was very thorough regarding my home improvement plans. He gave me reasonable advice about what policy I would need, and was honest about what I didn't need at this stage. He ensured I knew what conditions I would need to meet to ensure the policy remained valid regarding which contractors I chose. Thankfully I haven't needed to make a claim, so don't know what the team would be like in that case. Trustpilot, 21 August 2017