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Property Project Insurance - Where To Start?

Posted by The Landsite on 15th June 2022 -

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When undertaking a building project as a developer or self-builder it is essential to invest in necessary protections should something happen during construction or thereafter.

However, understanding the different insurance options available and knowing when to kick start them can be a daunting task.

On The Landsite, we have top-rated businesses covering the entire UK, who offer warranty solutions for developers and self-builders, which offers some insight.

Site insurance and structural warranties are both forms of project insurance. Site insurance protects against issues arising on site before and during a build, while a structural warranty covers the cost of rectifying any damage or issues that arise after completion of the build.

Site insurance covers the owner of the property during the planning process and construction phase. Taken out before a build or refurbishment commences, it is the owner’s responsibility to take adequate cover to mitigate against risk, whether that is damage due to unforeseen circumstances such as fire, theft from the site or to protect against accidents on site.

Reputable contractors will have their own insurance that provides cover for their plant and materials on site, so site insurance may not be deemed necessary. However, a property owner will still need to be covered for public liability and will need to make sure that their builder maintains adequate cover at all times, even when there are no workmen on site. So site insurance is always recommended for peace of mind.

Build warranties are generally taken out by developers to provide a guarantee for up to ten years after the build for structural defects in the design, workmanship or materials used. A developer or builder needs to take out a warranty before the build commences and warranty providers must carry out inspections as a build progresses – it is not until completion that a 10 year warranty kicks into place. Typically, any defects within the new build after the the first two years of construction are the responsibility of the builder, but serious issues that appear after this time are covered by the warranty.

It is worth noting that some warrant providers, offer a building control service as well as a warranty, but these inspections are not the same. 

Building control surveyors ensure that construction works comply with building regulations. Unlike building control approval, a building warranty is not a statutory requirement, but very few mortgage providers will offer lending on a new build without a warranty

How to obtain a building warranty

•            Once planning is approved, source a reputable provider and submit plans.

•            The provider visits site for initial inspection and offers quote, usually calculated on floor footage.

•            On acceptance and payment of quote, applicant receives policy documents and other contractual documents, such as a technical manual, related to the build.

•            As the build commences, site inspections are carried out at significant stages of construction to check that the build continues to comply with warranty standards.  

•            On completion of build, a final inspection takes place. Subject to all stage certificates and a completion certificate being issued, the 10 year warranty cover begins.

To make a claim

Should a homeowner be in the unfortunate position of having to make a claim the action needed to be taken will depend on when the problem arose and the policy cover.

Defects period: Should a claim occur during the defects period which is usually up to two years after the build it is the developers’ responsibility. If the developer fails to rectify the problem or in the event they have become insolvent, then a warranty provider may help through a conciliation service.

Structural insurance period: If the home is more than two years old, and there is damage to the property, an application can be made to a warranty provider providing the defect is covered by the policy. This tends to cover issues such as foundations, external render and roofs and not smaller defects associated with fixtures and fittings.

Need a specialist? 

The Landsite Insurance Channel offers a wide range of trusted insurance and build warranty specialists throughout the UK. 

Related articles

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What Safety Certificates Do Landlords Need?

Missed Out on the Build-Zone Structural Warranties Webinar?

How To Find The Right Property and Land Insurance?


Tracey Assal

Online Property Platform Connecting ALL Sectors of the Property Industry

Link to The Landsite business profile

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