What insurance measures to consider when building a new home

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Creative Commons License photo credit: mueritz
From gaining planning permission to finally laying out the welcome mat, building a house can take months and years to be completed, from conception to design, building and furnishing. Along the way there are numerous hurdles and pitfalls to overcome, and steering clear of that infamous red tape is much easier said than done.

The future of the build itself could be decided well before the diggers and workmen actually arrive on site, as the costing process for the whole project is possibly the most important stage. Having the correct funds available to cover all the labour and material is vital, although be warned that building a house rarely goes exactly to plan – so make sure you have a realistic contingency, too.

Everyone has no doubt seen those popular TV programs documenting the process of people investing all their life savings and personal life into building their ‘dream’ home only for it to (sometimes) veer disastrously off course. Whether it’s due to through poor planning or some freak external factor, the whole venture can go hugely over budget, enduring lengthy delays, big overspends on labour and materials and getting caught up in disputes with planning committees, contractors and suppliers.

Taking out the right insurance, therefore, is enormously pertinent. The type of policy will differ greatly from person to person, and from build to build, so be certain to do appropriate research. The most convenient place for that is online, and the home insurance comparison website moneysupermarket.com is a useful starting point. Enter all the vital details and the site will deliver instant quotes from a variety of insurance providers.

Self-build insurance will ensure that you’re protected, should one of a wide range of financially-crippling scenarios arise. For example, members of the public may be injured, or they could damage the property either by accident or on purpose. This is where Public Liability insurance would cover you and your business. You should also think about the materials needed for the build, and also the building itself. Materials are expensive and may be damaged in transit, on site or even stolen along with tools and other equipment, so things like the Contractors All Risk policy can guard against the financial consequences of such incidents.

Any building site, no matter what size, can be a dangerous place to work, and accidents can and do happen. Employers’ Liability Insurance will protect you and your workforce in the event of any of your employees or even friends and volunteers claiming compensation for any injuries and illnesses sustained. Purchasing a Personal Accident policy will also give you and your family peace of mind.

Disagreements with contractors and suppliers are commonplace in the building industry and could ultimately be settled in court if the situation spirals out of control. Legal Expenses Insurance is often a bolt-on package offered when you take out home insurance and can include the costs of court fees, legal costs and solicitors’ fees.

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