Copy supplied by SelfBuild Insurance

All homes need to be insured against losses and damages, but special insurance is vital for major building work, such as self builds. This is to help ensure that you are not just covered against damages to your own property, but also for a wide range of risks that you may or may not have considered, throughout your project.

Below are the key risks that you may want to consider cover for:

Injury to members of the public
You can be held responsible or liable for anyone on your self build site, whether passers-by, visitors to the site or even a trespasser. Public Liability Insurance helps protect you and your project from the unforeseen costs of claims brought against you if someone is injured or killed on your site.

Injury to workers on site
If you’re employing workers on your site it is a legal requirement to have Employers’ Liability insurance in case these workers are injured during the course of their work.
Personal accident
Consider protecting yourself should you sustain a permanent disability, such as the loss of a limb, while on site. This cover provides a lump sum payment to the insured person.

Personal belongings
If you’re storing any of your belongings on site while you complete your build, you should consider cover for these as well. If you do, you’ll need to maintain appropriate security to prevent theft.

Theft of tools or plant from the site
Whether owned by you or hired-in, tools and plant can be expensive to replace. Even with this cover in place, you’ll still be expected to maintain a high level of site security. Assess the value of replacing any plant on site and choose a cover limit that suits your needs.

Contract Works cover
Contract Works cover is designed to help protect the property whilst under construction, including materials on site. Accidental damage, storm damage, vandalism, flooding and fire, are all risks to be aware of. As the build develops it starts to have value, so it’s important to choose a realistic cover limit to ensure your future home is protected as possible.

Legal disputes
Legal expenses cover can provide protection against any potential legal costs arising from contractual disputes between you and your contractor, utility companies, or for the removal of squatters from site during the course of the build.

Top Tips
• If you do decide to purchase self build cover, make sure it’s in place as soon as you have a plot and have begun the planning process, as you may already be liable for damage, loss or injury at this point.

• Don’t assume that your contractor’s insurance will cover the whole project. This is not the case. A contractor’s Public Liability insurance does not cover your property in the event of storms, fire or theft, and won’t cover visitors injured on your site.

• Consider maximising your cover with a comprehensive policy. This one-stop-shop solution can include Public Liability, Employers’ Liability, building works, legal costs, on-site temporary structures, and machinery/tools whether hired-in or owned.

Protect your dream home
Having cover in place for your self-build project can save you real time and money, so you should also look into having insurance in place that covers your newly built dream home. Check that your self build policy covers your completed project. Some policies (like the Self Build policy from SelfBuild Insurance), convert to buildings and contents insurance once your project is completed, until the policy expires, so you can be sure that your dream home is protected. You should also check that any limits in the policy meet your individual needs.

A name to trust
A self build policy can be a practical and worthy cost considering the amount you’re likely to invest in your home. With that in mind, it’s worth considering insuring with a trusted insurer that can secure your entire project. SelfBuild Insurance (link to our website) has over 20 years experience in the self-build insurance industry, working in partnership with Zurich, giving you that peace of mind that you need so you’ve got one thing less to worry about.

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