A home insurance policy can protect you against financial loss should your property or its contents become damaged due to a fire, flood or storm. Home insurance can also cover your possessions if they are damaged, lost or stolen and is a recommended purchase if you are not able to cover the costs of replacing the items in your home or rebuilding your property. There are two main types of home insurance policy; buildings insurance and contents insurance and each policy offers a different type of coverage.
In this article, we look at what type of home insurance you need for a new build property, how much new build home insurance costs and how to buy new build home insurance.
What insurance do I need for a new build?
A new build property is usually defined as a property that has been built, renovated or converted in the last 2 years. Each provider may have its own definition of a new build property, however, and some may also include properties that are 'off-plan' and not yet built. If you have bought a new build property you need to ensure that you are suitably insured in case anything goes wrong. Below we list some of the insurance policies you need for a new build property but more information can be found in our article, 'What insurance do you need when buying a house in the UK?'
New build buildings insurance
When you purchase a new build property you may be notified of a warranty (some warranties can be for up to 10 years) that covers problems related to the structure of the building and you may therefore assume that you do not need buildings insurance. However, despite your new build property coming with a warranty, this is only for structural problems caused by the developer and does not cover damage due to floods, storms or fire. It is therefore in your best interest to purchase a buildings insurance policy for your new build so you are suitably covered. Additionally, if you have bought a new build property with a mortgage, your mortgage provider is likely to insist that you purchase buildings insurance by the time you exchange contracts as that is when you legally own the property. If you have bought a new build property via a shared ownership scheme, you may not need to purchase buildings insurance if the property is leasehold as buildings insurance is usually organised by the freeholder. For more information on when you need buildings insurance, read our article 'Do I need home insurance?'
New build contents insurance
Contents insurance covers your personal possessions and furniture inside the home if they are stolen, destroyed or damaged. Some contents insurance providers also have the option to add accidental damage cover to the policies which will cover claims for damage caused by pets or problems caused by DIY accidents. Contents insurance is not a legal requirement but it is in your best interest to protect your items in the event of damage as it can cost a lot of money to replace them all at once.
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How much does new build home insurance cost?
How much you will pay for your new build home insurance can vary based on a number of factors including where you live, your property size and the rebuild value of the property. The rebuild value is the cost to build the property from scratch if it is completely destroyed in a fire, for example. It can be hard to know the rebuild value of your home but you can use various online calculators to work out this cost, like this online tool from the ABI.
According to data from Compare the Market in June 2023, just over half of their customers were quoted less than £174 for a combined building and contents insurance policy, less than £67 for a contents home insurance policy and less than £142 for a buildings insurance policy. In some instances, however, it could be cheaper to insure a new build property than an older property due to the improved safety features on new build homes. In addition, the brand new materials, plumbing and electrics in the property may mean you are less likely to make a claim.
For more information on the cost of home insurance, read our article 'How much does home insurance cost?'
How to get cheaper new build home insurance
When purchasing a new build home insurance policy there are a few money-saving tips that you should consider to ensure you are getting the best deal. We share some of these tips below, but for more money-saving ideas visit our article 'How to save money on your home insurance'.
5 ways to get cheap new build home insurance
- Shop around - Shopping around is one of the quickest and easiest ways to save money on your home insurance policy as you are comparing costs from various providers. An easy way to do this is via a comparison site such as Quotezone*.
- Pay annually - Paying your insurance premium annually can save you money as some insurers add a credit charge to your premium if you choose to pay it over 12 months. You can find out more about how this works in Damien's video.
- Secure your home - Some insurers offer a discount for homes that have enhanced security such as burglar alarms and secure locks.
- Increase your excess - Increasing how much you are willing to contribute towards the cost of a claim can reduce your policy premium but remember that this is the amount payable if you do make a claim so make sure it is an amount that you can realistically afford.
- Buy a combined policy - Choosing to purchase a combined buildings and contents insurance policy can be cheaper than buying separate policies.
How to buy new build home insurance
If you are in the process of buying your new build property you may be wondering when is the best time to buy new build home insurance. If you have a mortgage on your new build property it is likely to be a condition of the mortgage that you have buildings insurance and this will therefore need to be in place when you exchange contracts. If you choose to purchase a contents insurance policy this can be purchased at any time but you need to remember that your possessions won't be covered until you have purchased the policy. In some cases, it can take a while for your new postcode to be recognised by an insurer but you can contact Royal Mail or your builder to ensure it has been registered.
One of the quickest and easiest ways to purchase a home insurance policy is via a comparison site such as Quotezone*. Comparison sites allow you to compare quotes from multiple insurers at once, saving the time that it takes to generate quotes from each insurer. We have partnered with Quotezone* so that you can search and compare cheap quotes from over 40 UK home insurance providers. One consideration when using a comparison site is that they are not always 'whole of market' and so you may sometimes find a better deal with an insurer elsewhere.
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