Subsidence Insurance FAQs
What is subsidence?
Subsidence is the movement of a building’s foundations that is caused by movement in the ground, usually after soil under the building dries and shrinks in hot weather, or when underground pipes leak and weaken the soil beneath the foundations. Damage often appears as cracks in the walls, ceilings and around windows or door frames.
I think I have subsidence. What should I do?
Contact your home buildings insurance provider who will guide you through the best course of action to take. Usually, a surveyor or engineer will be dispatched to make an assessment.
An inspection of nearby trees and shrubs may be recommended, as these can often be the cause of subsidence when roots take up moisture from under your building. Underground pipes may also be investigated.
How long will my subsidence claim take?
It’s impossible to give a definite timeframe as every claim is different and needs to be treated as such. Investigations need to be carried out to monitor structural movements, which could take place over the course of a year. Repairs will not be started until the building has settled.
Can I still sell my house after it has been affected by subsidence?
Assuming that subsidence damage has been properly repaired there shouldn’t be a significant impact on the value of your property, however, many buyers will perceive the risk of subsidence recurring as a deterrent. It can also be harder to insure a property with a history of subsidence, unless you use a specialist insurer.