Consider These Home Insurance Items While Renovating
With all the hassle of moving home, 2-in-5 of us are now choosing to renovate our current properties to accommodate growing families and the need for space.
But with so much to organise when it comes to building work, the thought of home insurance can easily slip our minds. Lawsure wants to highlight the importance of keeping your home insurance in mind when planning a new extension as you may accidentally be invalidating your policy.
Whatever work you may be planning, you should notify your provider before work commences. Insurers want to know of any risks to the security and safety of your property and construction work can be seen as a risk.
Firstly, having builders in your property is classed an unknown adult having access to your home. Should anything be stolen during the period of construction work, you will need to make sure you are covered.
Your building’s security may also be compromised, as walls are being knocked down to make room for a new extension, your home’s safety may not be as strong as it once was. Burglars are opportunists who can take advantage of this.
Workmen on lunch breaks could leave your property exposed to crafty thieves and they can be in and out within minutes.
Similarly, damage could happen to your property if the roof is removed, wind, rain and other extreme weather can quickly ravage through your home without the protection of a roof and even builders who consider weather forecasts can’t always be prepared such intense climates.
With the thought of theft aside, there are also other dangers to your home. Human error can cause damage to your property. A burst water main or inadequate electrical works could lead to a fire or flood. Not only will your valuables be at risk but all your contents could be damaged.
If you do not notify your insurer beforehand and disaster does strike, that may refuse a claim, leaving you with the financial burden of having to replace all your belongings.
You will also need to consider your neighbours, do they occupy a property that has earned the right to light? This is where a property has benefitted from natural light for a certain period of time and this is now protected. Your new extension may compromise this natural light and you could be liable.
You may be required to financially compensate your neighbours, or in the worst-case scenario, tear down your new building. By adding right to light insurance to a policy, you protect yourself from this. You can find out more here.
Construction sites can be dangerous and you will also need to think about public safety, your contractors should have health and safety precautions in place but accidents can still happen. You may be required to take out public liability insurance in case anyone becomes injured on your premise, even if they are trespassing, they still may be able to claim for compensation from you.
Another thing to consider is any legal expenses you may occur as a result of your extension. Most contractors will provide an amazing service and give you the home you are longing for. Unfortunately, there are a few out there who won’t do the job properly and leave you with an eyesore or even worse, an unsafe home.
Taking out insurance to cover any legal costs should you have to take them to court will at least give you some solace if this does happen to you.
Your builders should also have their own insurance but you can't always rely on this, make sure your insurer will cover any building materials, especially if you purchased them yourself and not through your contractor, are covered against theft or damage. If your provider doesn’t cover this, you can seek another provider who offers this.
Lastly, it is highly likely the value of your home will increase due to these renovations and your premium will need to reflect this. Should the worst happen and you need to make a claim, even before work has finished, you don’t just risk having less cash paid to you, but your claim could be voided entirely. Your premium may rise but it is worth paying the little extra cost to give you peace of mind that you are fully covered.
If you are doing small works to your home, such as new carpets, you won’t need to notify your provider about this but any structural changes will need to be declared. When in doubt, it is best to give them a call so you know you have covered all grounds.
These scenarios are rare but when they do happen, they can have disastrous consequences. very few of us are in a financial position to repair or replace items we need to.
For peace of mind, always seek the top-level insurance possibly from a reputable provider to avoid the sting of an unpaid claim and make sure you scrutinise the small print.