Specialist home insurance

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Specialist insurance could be suitable for you if your house has a thatched roof or if your home is at risk of flooding or subsidence. Read on to find out more.

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Many properties don't fit neatly into a box marked 'standard', perhaps because they have a thatched roof or are a listed building. Unusual homes can be easy on the eye, but they can be difficult to insure.

If you own or are planning to buy a 'non standard' property, it would be wise to look at specialist home insurance, or non standard home insurance as it is sometimes known.

Flood risk

One in six homes in England is at risk of flooding – and you can find out if yours is one of them by visiting the website of the Environment Agency at www.environment-agency.gov.uk. If you live in a flood risk area, it will almost certainly affect your home insurance premiums and you will probably have to seek out specialist cover. Please click here to find out more about flood risk insurance.

Thatch homes

Properties with thatched roofs are usually old – and at greater risk of fire damage than homes of a more standard construction. So mainstream insurers are wary. It is, however, important that you arrange appropriate cover in case of a claim; otherwise you could be left with an expensive repair bill. Please click here to find out more about thatched roof insurance.


The main cause of subsidence in the UK is the shrinkage of clay soil in dry weather. Clay soil is particularly common in the South East, so properties in the area are especially vulnerable. But trees can also have a big impact, as they suck moisture from the soil. Subsidence claims can be expensive – they cost insurers £175m in 2009. So you can expect to pay a higher premium for your buildings insurance if your property is prone to subsidence. The terms and conditions of the policy could also differ from standard cover. Please click here to read more about how you can spot subsidence and arrange specialist subsidence insurance cover.

Listed buildings

Listed buildings are protected by law and you usually need special permission to carry out any repairs or alterations. You might even have to use a certain type of material or technique, which can be expensive. Owners of listed buildings often need specialist help to find appropriate cover. Please click here to find out more aboutlisted buildings insurance.

If you own or are planning to buy a 'non standard' property, it would be wise to look at specialist home insurance


Standard home insurance policies rarely cover a property that is left unoccupied for more than 30 days. If you know you are going to be away from home for a month or so, perhaps due to a long stay in hospital or an extended trip abroad, you should make sure that you have adequate cover to protect your property and belongings. Please click here to read more about insurance for unoccupied properties.


A farm is a business as well as your home, which means that a standard home insurance policy is simply inadequate for your specific needs. A specialist house insurance policy really is a must in this circumstance.

Non Standard Construction Insurance

If your home has brick walls and a tile roof, then you can be pretty certain that it will be classed by an insurer as 'standard construction'. However, many properties are more unusual. They might, for example, have a timber frame or be made using traditional methods of wattle and daub. If so, you will require a specialist buildings insurance policy to ensure you are adequately covered. Please click here to find out more about insurance for properties with a non standard construction.

Self Build Insurance

If you choose to build your own home then you will need specialist self-build home insurance to cover the property during the project. This cover can provide protection from damage to your property from vandalism, flood, fire or storm damage. It will also protect the tools you use from theft. If you have employed people to help you out with the self-build project then you will also benefit from employer's liability insurance which will cover the cost of a claim for damages in the event that someone is killed or injured during the project. Please click here to find out more about self-build home insurance.

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