What is Self-Build Home Insurance?

Caeva O'Callaghan | November 21st, 2023

There’s a lot to consider when building your own home. One of the first questions you should ask yourself is, am I covered by home insurance if anything bad should happen?

If you are building your own house, you will need a self build insurance policy. This will cover you for public and employers’ liability as well as the building itself and construction materials.

Failing to have a self build insurance policy in place will put all your hard work at risk. Building a new home is a substantial investment, which should never be left to chance.

Read on to discover the answers to questions such as:

  • What is a self build policy and do I need one?
  • I’m building my own house, do I need insurance?
  • Does home insurance cover building my own house?

Don’t leave anything to chance. Normal home insurance won’t cover a self build project, so read on to find out what you need before you start.

What is self build insurance?

Self build insurance will protect you and your home while it’s being built. It’s a specialist kind of insurance that covers you against the risk of any damage or injury that might occur while working on-site. It also includes liability and materials cover.

You will need self build insurance if you are building a new house on an empty plot of land. But you’ll also need it if you’re knocking down an old house and rebuilding it from scratch.

You can purchase self build insurance cover that will protect your project from the moment you buy the land. It will cover you as long as you like, up to the moment the work is complete and your new home is ready to live in.

It’s up to you how long you want the cover to last. You can always extend the cover term if the work goes over schedule.

But don’t forget – it runs out when your home is complete and ready to live in. Afterwards, you’ll need to take out standard buildings and contents home insurance policies.

What does self build insurance cover?

When you build your own home, you are technically an employer. This is because even if you plan on doing the majority of the work yourself, it’s virtually impossible to do everything yourself. At some point, you will need to insure a plumber, an electrician, or builders.

Self build home insurance covers your workers, your land, your materials, and any damage to the home that occurs during the construction process.

Self build insurance comes with two liability covers: employers’ and public.

Employers’ liability protects you against the risk of your workers making any compensation claims for illness or injury as a result of working on site.

Public liability insurance covers you in case a member of the public is injured or their property is damaged because of your building works and they decide to claim.

You may also choose to add legal expenses cover to your policy. This helps to pay the cost of any contract disputes that might arise while building your own home.

Personal accident protection is another optional add-on that’s well worth having. It will pay out a lump sum if you suffer an injury during building works. It can also help to cover any money lost on the self-build project if you can’t help out. Plus, it covers hospital fees and more. Personal accident insurance also pays out if the accident results in your death.

Other things to consider

If you need to take out a mortgage to fund your self-build project, your mortgage provider may want you to take out self-build insurance before they lend you money. This helps to protect their investment.

Also, you’ll need to get your self-build insurance from a specialist insurer. Most standard home insurers don’t offer cover during the self-build construction stage. Ask your builder – they may be able to help you find someone.

Are you renovating or converting a home, instead of building from the ground up? The fact is, if you’re employing other people on your project, you’ll need employers’ liability insurance and public liability insurance as a legal minimum. It will be in your best interest to take out a self build insurance policy to make sure everything is taken care of.

If you’re embarking on a self build project, we can help find the right insurance for you. Give us a call any weekday between 8.30am and 5.30pm on 0818 224433 or 042 9359051. All our agents are trained experts and can help you with all your house insurance questions.

All Information in this post is accurate as of the date of publishing.