Are you building a new home or a property to sell on? Maybe you’re looking into building an extension or converting a property?

It’s a well know fact that these projects can be hard work – they take planning, resources, time, money and commitment.  And because they can overrun, problems CAN come up and accidents CAN happen.  One of the first things to do, before starting anything else, is to get your insurance sorted.

Titan Insurance are experts in this area and we have put together 10 Top Tips to help you understand Self-Build insurance:

1) You need more than just house insurance

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that your building project is already covered by your house insurance.   These projects won’t be insured under your regular Home Insurance policy and you could come unstuck if you haven’t taken out the right insurance from the beginning.

2) Don’t assume your builder’s insurance is enough

Your builder should have public liability insurance, but don’t assume that this is enough to cover all possibilities.  You are responsible for the whole project so you’ll want to make sure that, should the worst happen, you’ve got all the cover you need.

3) Make sure you’re insured from the start

You might think this is when you start building work, but it starts even earlier.  For a Self-Build, you’ll need insurance right from when you exchange contracts.  You’ll be liable for anything that can happen as soon as you own the land (like somebody coming on to the land and injuring themselves), so be prepared and have your insurance in place.

4) Look after your ‘work-in-progress’ 

Building is a big project, so remember to look after it from beginning to the end.  While it’s a work in progress, you’ll need Site Insurance coverage.  This covers the building site from accidents and forces of nature – fire, lightning, explosions, earthquake, storm and flood.  It covers Plant, Tools, Equipment, Huts and Caravans from theft or malicious damage.   Think of how much your project will be set back if you’re not insured – in cost and time.  Site Insurance covers your works in progress right up until the project is finished.

5) Plan for the very worst

Even if you can’t imagine anything big going wrong, it’s impossible to guess the future!  So, plan for the worst and feel secure knowing you’re covered.  What would you do if your house burned down just days before you were due to move back in?  How would you pay to re-build it without insurance?

To get this part right, you need to have the correct Reinstatement Cost – this is the full cost of how much a re-build would be (materials, labour, removal of debris, professional fees and VAT) should you experience a total loss.  Take the time to work out the right value at the start, even ask a surveyor if you need to, so you don’t find yourself out of pocket if the worst happens.

6) Cover yourself for accidents

Even if you don’t expect it, accidents can happen.  Make sure you are covered in case your building project causes injury to a member of the public or somehow causes damage to another property.  For this, you’ll need Public Liability Insurance.

7) Remember your position as the ‘boss’

It is pretty likely that you’ll have employees, sub-contractors or maybe family and friends working on the project. In the eyes of insurance you’re the ‘boss’ and you need Employers Liability coverage in case anybody is injured on site, or, they damage anybody else’s property.

8) Give yourself long-term peace of mind

It’s an amazing feeling when a self-build project is finished!  Maybe you built a home from the ground up or made a huge extension to your house?  So, don’t forget to give yourself peace of mind once things are finished.  You’ll need a 10 Year Structural Warranty to protect you in case there are any structural defects (from materials & workmanship).

And, if you’re building a property specifically to sell it, UK mortgage lenders will ask you to have a 10 Year Structural Warranty in place.

9) Be kind to your neighbours

You’re probably a caring neighbour and think of the noise and mess when you’re building.  But, there’s a little more to think about when it comes to insurance.

If you are renovating or building you’ll want to think about taking out Party Wall Insurance (JCT 21.2.1 Non Negligence Insurance).  You’re responsible for any damage to your neighbour’s property as a result of your project – not just immediate damage, but damage that could happen in the future caused by your project.  This kind of damage can happen when building new foundations and there could be a structural impact on your neighbour’s property, so you’ll want to be protected.

10) Speak to an Expert

Yes it’s true, you can find lots of information online about Self-Build Insurance. But when you’re putting big amounts of time and money into your project, it’s worth spending a little time talking to an expert to make sure you have your insurance cover just right.  A few minutes extra before you start can make all the difference if misfortune strikes while you’re building.

At Titan Insurance we have a team of insurance experts who can guide you through the process. You’ll have all the protection you need in place, leaving you to focus on the build itself, worry-free.

Call us on 0207 731 3700 to get a quote for your Self-Build Insurance. You’ll get a fast quote, quick coverage and long-term peace of mind.

Remember to seek advice in case of any doubt. 

Titan Insurance Services Limited has been delivering specialist insurance for over 25 years.  We are proud to use our knowledge, expertise and industry relationships to provide you with the best policies to meet your needs.  There’s no need to worry about online applications – we give unbeatable service over the phone, quick quotes and fast cover!


0207 731 3700