What does 'Building Insurance' mean when buying a property?

Find out what Building Insurance means when you are buying a property. 'What does Building Insurance mean?' plus over 150 other property related terms and jargon in plain English

Building Insurance

This is often confused with contents insurance.

Buildings insurance covers the structure of the building itself and usually includes fittings such as flooring, fitted kitchens and bathroom ceramics (toilets, baths, etc.) It does not cover furniture.

Should you suffer a flood, for example, the repair work will be covered by buildings insurance while damaged furniture and personal belongings are covered by contents insurance.

If you take out a mortgage then buildings insurance is usually compulsory so the mortgage lender can cover their investment should something dramatic happen and you would not be able to afford the repair.

For leasehold properties the buildings insurance is usually organized by the freeholder but you will end up paying your share via the Service Charge.

For Freehold properties, especially period properties I always keep the same building insurance provider as the seller was using even if better deals exist.

This is because if a dramatic issue arose, such as subsidence, there can be no argument as to which insurance company will pay for the work needed to rectify the problem.

To learn more about the ins and outs of building insurance and how to handle it during your purchase pick up a copy of my ebook How to Really Buy a Property.

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How to Really Buy a Property

"... auction. They are properties that no lender will accept a mortgage application on and this might be because: They are structurally unsound and no insurance company will cover them They have no inside bathroom The lease is extremely short (see below) They have no kitchen -..."

"... insurance - your solicitor will want to know that the property is either currently insured or that someone is prepared to insure it. The easiest way to confirm this is to find out who is covering the property at the moment. This is essential if you are applying for a mortgage because, should the structure burn to the ground the day after you move in, the lender will be able to recover the money you have borrowed. If you are purchasing for cash you will still want to have the same piece of..."
"... look like and your solicitor believes that the one provided is inadequate. The buildings insurance on the property may not be adequate for the lender you have chosen even though it was fine for the vendor's lender. The guarantees on work carried out on the property are from companies no..."
"... below). Fixtures and Fittings List: From the vendor (see below). Building insurance: From the vendor or if he does not have it, from the insurance company once the vendor provides him with the company name and policy number. Guarantees: From the vendor (see below). Planning Consents (where..."
"... of where the Title Deeds are or the Title Deeds themselves A Sellers Questionnaire A Fixtures and Fittings List A copy of the current buildings insurance Any guarantees he has concerning work that has been carried out on the property Copies of planning consent or building..."
"... days to agree what should be included on the fixtures and fittings list The vendor cannot find details of his current building insurance and has to ask the insurance company to send him a copy of the current certificate The vendor has told you something is under guarantee but cannot find the..."

"... solicitors fight with each other and delay the purchase; How to get documents faster than your solicitor can; What to consider when organising property insurance; How the drains could cost you a fortune; When to take a view and when to take a stand; How to stop small details..."
"... to include with the sale? The Sellers Pack Does the vendor know of any reason why a buyer would not want the property? insurance Is the building insured and if not, why not? Planning Consent and Building Regulations Approval If any changes were made to..."

"... list Any planning consents (if applicable) Any building regulation certificates (if applicable) Any guarantees (damp, roof, etc.) The building insurance details The local search If the property is leasehold The last three years service charge accounts The last three years ground rent..."

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