Weatherbys Hamilton has just completed its first five years. In that time we have grown rapidly and established ourselves firmly in the private client sector. We are very strong in our three core areas of Private Client, Farm & Estate and Bloodstock and our Partners and staff are expert in all of them.
In the first of our published newsletters we have covered a variety of insurance matters that are topical to clients. We have highlighted three of them below.
There are a plethora of things to think about before undertaking the renovation of a house or building the extension that is often an alternative to a move.
Choosing an architect, structural engineer, or builder, or just making sure that there is enough money in the bank to pay for the project tend to be the priorities. Insurance is very often the last thing on anyone’s mind but it really does pay not to leave it to the last minute.
Doing so can delay the diggers moving in or even invalidate any existing cover.
Most houses will already be covered by a household policy and it is often believed that this will be enough. It may be, but equally it may not, and if left unchecked can have disastrous results. The majority of household policies have restrictions in place that limit the cover by reference to the cost of the project or the length of time the work may take. They could actually exclude any cover for structural work.
It is common for a household policy not to cover a building extension until the works have been completed, just the existing structure. As importantly, the insurance cover will again more than likely not cover any error by the builder; for example taking down a structural beam which causes part of the existing house to move. It really does then become important that you ensure that your builder not only has Public Liability insurance in place but also Contractors All Risks cover too.
Without belabouring the point, that is probably not the end of it. Is the contract in joint names ie the contractor and you? What type of contract is it? It is vital that you speak to a specialist who can advise you so that you have the right policy in place. It could mean cancelling your current household policy and replacing it with a specialist policy that covers the existing structure in conjunction with the works undertaken by the contractors and the extension itself until all the works have been completed. If it is thought about in time It is not difficult to organise and should be regarded as an essential part of any building project.
The WH App
In the next few months we will be able to provide our clients with the facility to view their insurance documentation on the WH App. Obviously Apps are hardly new news but we think this is ground breaking in our sector and will be of real benefit, particularly to clients with household insurance with us.
Clients who continue to want their documentation by mail will of course still receive it that way, but for those who don’t want their files clogged up with paper or have to manage yet more emails, the App could be the answer. To be able, at the touch of a thumb, to check who is insured to drive your car; whether you have travel insurance when you are already on the way to the airport; or whether you have remembered to add that piece of jewellery, will we hope be a big plus for Weatherbys Hamilton clients.