Buildings Insurance -
SUBSIDENCE - You will need help with this
First of all, it is going to cost you. There is
a substantial excess, so you will have to pay the first part of
any claim. Most policies now impose £1,000 but you can shop
around for less. I hope you have some savings put to one
Second, your claim will take months, if not
years to resolve. But more about the handling of subsidence
claims under household claims handling. There is a long list of
exclusions. Here is a typical list. If one or more of these
apply, you are on your own.
All the outside drives, paths, terraces, walls,
gates and so on are not covered unless your main buildings or
outbuildings are damaged.
Landslip by coastal erosion
Movement of solid floor slabs unless foundations beneath
outside walls also damaged by the same cause
Bedding down of new structures or newly made-up ground
Then there are the extra's that apply to standard cover. This
is where you actually get some accidental damage cover with
your standard perils.
Underground service pipes and cables. Apart
from wear and tear, you are pretty well covered for any damage
you are responsible for as owner of the building.
Glass and sanitary fittings. Again accidental damage to your
bathroom fixtures, built in ceramic hobs in your kitchen and
all the fixed glass and glazing in your building. Beware, that
this is a clause further on into the policy that will restrict
what you can claim for. Each item is treated as a separate
item, not as part of a suite. Thus, if your wash basin is
accidentally damaged, don't expect your insurer to fork out for
a new bathroom suite! This part of the policy might also carry
the unoccupancy clause mentioned above.
Alternative Accommodation. Very important if
your home is made uninhabitable owing to serious damage. Your
insurer will pay for you to be put up elsewhere. This might be
a local hotel or the extra cost to family and friends if they
can give you a roof over your head. At least one insurer will
also pay for your pets to go into boarding kennels if
necessary. Cover might also provide for either loss of rent, if
you are a landlord, or payment of rent due. There is a limit, a
sum insured which is usually 20% of the overall sum insured for
your buildings cover.
If you sell your property, the person who buys it can enjoy the
benefit of the cover up to the date of completion provided they
have no cover of their own.
BASIS OF SETTLEMENT - All good policies will provide for
'reinstatement'. That is, in effect, 'new for old'. It will be
repaired with new parts and if the whole structure is beyond
economical repair, it will re rebuilt with new parts and no
contribution from you (except any excess). With some buildings,
meeting new regulations might mean increased costs. Not a
problem - but it only applies to the damaged part of the
building. Demolishing, removing debris, shoring up and so on
are all covered as are reasonable architects and surveyors
fees, legal fees and fees for estimates, plans and so on.
Q: Please describe what
A: Pregnant cat knocked over lamp
on dressing table and then gave
birth on white carpet.
Q: What steps have you taken to
prevent a recurrence?
A: Cat has been neutered.
|Extracts taken from actual claim
forms submitted to
a number of UK car insurance companies