Block of Flats Insurance

Block of Flats Insurance2020-06-24T10:46:42+00:00

Block of Flats Insurance

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Block of Flats Insurance

WELCOME TO PROPERTY INSURANCE CENTRE

Property Insurance Centre, est. 1976, is one of the few specialist Block Of Flats Insurance brokers with offices in Moorgate, London and Donaghadee Road, Newtownards, Co. Down. We have a highly experienced team that ensures that you get the best cover and rates on Block Insurance regardless of the size of the block.

BLOCK OF FLATS INSURANCE ENQUIRIES: 0800 085 3761

BLOCK OF FLATS INSURANCE ESSENTIALS & FAQS

Block of Flats Insurance Cover Includes:

Block of Flats Insurance Comparison:

We are not on insurance comparison websites, so we get the best level of cover and rates directly for our customers. 

With over 40 years of brokering we have access to the major UK underwriters and with our excellent working relationship we have access to the best rates in the UK & Northern Ireland.

Our dedicated new business team will take your details and then do all of the searching for you. You can be sure of getting the best rates around.  By speaking to us directly we will get a fuller picture of what exactly you need.

Buildings Insurance for Small Block Of Flats:

Not only do we provide buildings cover, landlords contents, lift cover and liability insurance for inside and the surrounding area of your block of flats but we will give the best prices regardless of the size of the apartment block. We insure clients who have a converted home of 4 flats to multi-million pound blocks in London.

Can I insure my block of flats if I am not the freeholder?2020-03-31T11:37:25+00:00

Yes, but you must do things correctly! Many owner-occupiers have this problem. The Freeholder has gone AWOL and the occupants are left wondering can they do this themselves and would it be valid. Normally tenants can form a Right to Manage Company which allows this to be done. We would recommend you get the correct advice from specialist companies who do this for Blocks.

Will a block of flats policy cover a tenant?2020-03-31T11:26:59+00:00

It will cover the buildings – for example, if there is a burst pipe and the flat walls get damaged, then this will be covered under the building’s section of the policy.

However, a flat owner or tenant should have their own contents insurance in place for contents owned by them. If the contents are not communal contents and owned by the Landlord, then they will not be covered under a standard Block of Flats Insurance Policy. You can arrange a Tenant Contents policy through Property Insurance Centre for as little as £56.00.

Can I insure a block of flats when one of the flats is empty?2020-03-31T11:23:19+00:00

Yes. You can insure a block of flats which is partially empty. It is better to give the insurer a greater idea of when it will be occupied again and why it is empty. This will help the insurer determine the correct premium and keep the policyholder right in the event of any claim. Some insurer may not even charge any extra premium if the flat is empty only temporarily – they may, however, exclude Escape of Water in that particular flat.

Who can take out a block of flats insurance policy?2020-03-31T11:21:12+00:00

Landlords, Freeholders, RTM (Right to Manage Companies) are all typical policyholders. The policy is designed to cater for part Owner-Occupied & part Let to Tenants OR fully Owner-Occupied & fully Private Let.

Does a block of flats insurance policy cover the communal area?2020-03-31T11:19:04+00:00

Yes. This type of policy will cover the whole block which means any communal areas will be covered for material damage (such as a burst pipe & water damage along with Public Liability).

What is a block insurance policy?2020-03-31T11:17:09+00:00

Our block insurance policies are bespoke and designed to your specific requirements.  Our clients range from small residential landlords to large commercial portfolio policies tailored to what is required and offer the best prices in the UK.  These policies are common with landlords looking to cover their buildings and offer liability protection up to £10 million if required.

In addition to the standard level of cover, we also offer legal expenses cover, loss of rent protection, alternative accommodation and landlords contents to name just a few types of additional cover.

Block of flats insurance – what to do in the event of a claim?2020-03-30T18:15:51+00:00

There are two fundamental points you ought to know before you need to make a claim. Appreciating these will make sure you don’t get off on the wrong foot, with the person on the other end of the phone. Of course, most importantly, these core principles will help you to use best practice before and during the claim process.

1. The onus always rests on YOU (the insured) to PROVE that there is a VALID claim.

2. YOU must be able to PROVE the amount of the loss

TOP TIP – Prepare for a loss before it happens.

If you haven’t already, make a list of the communal contents there are within the Block for example. Why not take a picture of what is there BEFORE disaster strikes

If something is stolen, you will need to prove it existed in the first place. You, or the management company, should keep receipts. It can be difficult in practice to keep receipts, but why not have it sent to you electronically next time you make a purchase. Most retail outlets will do this & it means you will always have access to a copy.

Lack of composure could cost you money.

The first thing many people do in the event of a claim is rush to phone the claims line. Taking time to read your Schedule and your Policy Wording will have you better equipped to ensure you are paid a fair sum. So take some time and revisit the Schedule and Policy Wording before phoning an insurance company claims line and accidentally say the wrong thing.

This may not hurt your claim prospects in the end, but it could drag things out if the claims handler decides extra investigation is required. So phone promptly, but it doesn’t have to be the very second you find out – you need time to prepare for your initial claim conversation and calm down from what can be a potentially stressful event!

The more calm and collected you are, the better chance there is that you will supply the right information and your claim will be handled correctly and more efficiently.

So always remember the two fundamental points of claiming. They are two LEGAL REQUIREMENTS for a Claim. However, it works both ways. If the insurer declines a claim, the onus will fall on the insuring entity to prove an exclusion applies.

4 simple steps in the event of a claim on your block of flats insurance policy

1. Take photos

Get your own images as soon as you are aware of any damage. This is a powerful way to prove that loss has occurred. The insurer may send out a Loss Adjuster to assess the damage which may take a week.

If the adjuster fails to see some of the damage, then your photos will mean you don’t have to argue the case that things missed were also damaged – your photos will help this & ensure a proper full estimate of damage is submitted to the insurer for their consideration.

2. Don’t throw away any damaged items

You don’t want any dispute and the insurer will need to see them as evidence.

3. Minimise the Loss (where possible)

If water is escaping, for example, then turn off the water or get an emergency plumber if you are unsure. It is actually a duty imposed by Common Law to take reasonable steps to minimise the loss. You should act as though you are ‘uninsured.’

4. Call your Broker

This is one of the main reasons why going through an independent agent is the preferred option of many.

Those who have had a claim in the past will know, a Broker is the Agent of the Insured, not the Insurer. They are there to act for YOU.

Property Insurance Centre has a team of Loss Assessors who will act on your behalf and make sure your settlement is a fair one!

How to minimise risks in my block of flats?2020-03-30T18:07:08+00:00

Maintain your Building

  • The vast majority of claims are actually turned down due to a lack of property maintenance – for example, this is particularly true with flat roof claims.
  • Make sure your roof is inspected every few years (or as the policy requires) and keep proof of such an inspection.
  • This can be the difference between your claim being paid and not!
  • There are however practical steps which you can take to try to reduce the likelihood of a claim and this will normally be viewed favourably by insurance providers.
  • Make sure you have suitable fire detection, CCTV and physical security at your block as this will help to reduce the likelihood of fire, burglary or theft.
  • Good building maintenance and monitoring can help to reduce the potential for weather-related damage, malicious damage in common areas or claims for accidents as a result of poor maintenance or negligence.
  • Rather than just renew your insurance, take the time to think about what cover you need and also consider what steps you can take to reduce your risk by reviewing your current maintenance and security regimes.

TOP TIP – Keep your Fire Safety Procedures in Flats up to date. This can often get you discounts. Take a look at our special Fire Safety Guide which may help in lowering your insurance premium! Not to mention keeping the tenants and the building safer.

When might I need to make a claim?2020-03-30T18:03:34+00:00

Many people purchase insurance and put a large excess on the policy as they think they will never use it but it’s important to note that in 2018 property insurance companies in the UK paid more than £15 billion in claims*.

One article ** noted the top most common insurance claims made by small businesses in 2018 were for:

Burglary and theft
Water escape and frozen pipes
Wind and storm damage
Fire
Slips, trips and falls by members of the public

The type of building you have and the frequency of access by tenants and members of the public will clearly influence the likelihood of having to make a claim, as will the age and type of building being insured.

*Statistica.com

**https://www.thebalancesmb.com/common-insurance-claims-462673

What information do I need for my application?2020-03-30T18:00:11+00:00

To complete an application for block insurance you will need to know the basic information about the property such as:

The overall size of the building and how many individual flats you are insuring.

Construction and utility information such as the materials used for the walls and roof, security arrangements such as locks on doors/windows and whether there is any security on site as well as what kinds of utilities are available i.e. gas, oil heating etc.

– Whether there is a mix of residential and business and if so, what types of business are within the block.

– What fixtures and fittings are included within the property – and if there is any communal furniture or carpets that you may want to include in the communal contents section of the policy.

Once you have gathered all this basic information you should chat to an expert in Block Insurance, such as one of the Property Insurance Centre team.

It is always better to talk to a professional advisor. An expert will navigate you through the quotation swiftly and make sure all the right questions are asked. They can then give you details on all the different types of cover which you must include before discussing the range of optional extras.

What does the block of flats insurance policy typically cover?2020-03-30T17:57:20+00:00
  • Property Owners Liability
  • Alternative Accommodation
  • Loss of Rental Income
  • Communal Contents
  • Legal Cover is optional

Our Block Policies are Flexible

You can add or remove certain covers as requiredLift inspection policies can be bolted on. If you have a claim we can provide a claims handler who works FOR YOU, not the insurance company!

So our essentials in terms of the cover you will need are property owners liability cover in case someone is injured in the property. Employers liability cover in case a member of staff or volunteer is injured. Cover for damage which is malicious or intentional and for accidental damage.

Our recommended optional extras which are normally regarded as beneficial include:

Legal expenses to cover any legal advice or representation you need if someone makes a claim against you

Loss of rent or cover for alternative accommodation in case the block becomes uninhabitable for any reason.

There is a specialist insurance cover for Blocks of Flats with multiple tenancy types. For example, if there are shop units on the ground floor and residential above then standard block of flats insurance will not offer adequate cover.

If you are looking for an independent insurance quote then we can arrange policies for the freeholder, leaseholder or management companies. Cover can include all risks such as fire, storm, flood subsidence and escape of water.

We have access to many different insurance underwriters such as AXA, Zurich, RSA, Aviva and Allianz, for example. We can, therefore, ensure you the best cover for the best price!

Even if you convert your house to have multiple units/flats to let out to people you need a block of flats insurance.

Your block of flats insurance cover can extend to include common areas, landscaping, solar panels, malicious damage by tenants and accidental damage to your buildings.

Our block of flats insurance for multiple types of occupancy can also cover you for loss of rent following damage, alternative accommodation and unoccupancy cover.

Property Insurance Centre also offers legal protection insurance. Other aspects of cover for your policy that could be relevant are:

Contents of Common Parts – ensuring that shared areas of a block of flats such as stairs, entrance ways have adequate cover

Employers liability – this is compulsory if you employ staff to work at your block of flats such as a concierge, etc. Some of you may need Directors & Officers insurance.

 

Who is responsible for what when dealing with block insurance?2020-03-31T16:28:16+00:00

Insurance arrangements in a block of flats or apartments can be confusing. Here are the straightforward facts about responsibility.

Owner/Landlord

You have responsibility for insuring the building and your policy must be suitable for rented properties if you are renting your flats out. If something happens like a fire or a flood you need to ensure you have the right insurance to pay for repairs or in the worst case for the building to be rebuilt.

If you own more than one building you can take out one combined policy for all your properties.

If you own a leasehold flat/apartments, the building should be insured by the landlord who owns the freehold. Typically, it isn’t your responsibility to take out buildings cover (although you may still be paying the premiums, via your service charge).

If you have any fittings or contents within the communal areas of the building you may want to take out contents insurance to cover this.

Remember that you also need public liability insurance and if you have any employees you will also need employee liability insurance.

If you rely on the income from your tenants to pay your bills, you may want to take out rent protection and alternative accommodation cover as well.

Management Company

In many blocks of flats, a management company will be in place and act on behalf of the owner/landlord. They will usually arrange all the necessary insurance on behalf of the landlord.

Tenants

While a tenant is not responsible for insuring the building itself (that’s the landlord’s responsibility) you need to make sure you have home contents insurance for your possessions to ensure you can replace them if something happens to them.

Owner-Occupier

If you have bought an apartment and have a mortgage, it is likely that the mortgage company will ask for you to take buildings cover in case something happens.

If you don’t have a mortgage you don’t have to have buildings insurance cover – but it is advisable.

You should also take out contents insurance to cover your belongings.If you are insuring a block of flats remember that you need to insure the cost of rebuilding – not the market value of the building. That said, the cost of rebuilding will go up over time – so you will need to increase the value you insure.

What types of blocks do Property Insurance Centre insure?2020-03-30T17:31:33+00:00
  • Converted Block of Flats
  • Purpose Built Block of Flats
  • Blocks with a Commercial Unit below
  • Block with mixed Tenant types
  • Owner Occupied Blocks of Flats

 

What is block of flats insurance?2020-03-30T17:27:26+00:00

Block Insurance or block of flats insurance is for property owners or management companies with multiple connected properties.

The risks associated with a single property are not the same as properties which are connected, so block insurance exists for these types of properties.

Common examples of these are:

Blocks of flats, conversions or maisonettes.

REQUEST A CALLBACK

CASE STUDY: MR. KHAN WHO SAVED OVER 40% WITH BETTER COVER

Mr. Khan Saved Over 40% On His Premium

Mr Khan was a long-standing leaseholder in a block of purpose-built flats in London. The rebuilding cost of the property was £1 million.

His freeholder was in charge of insuring the property for years. Every year the insurance was renewed with the same insurer with little thought given to the premium.

Mr Khan approached the Freeholder and asked his permission to shop around for a specialist block of flats insurance broker.

Mr Khan eventually spoke with Property Insurance Centre who were able to provide several premiums with different insurers, who were more competitive than the existing provider.

Mr Khan saved over 40% on the premium he paid with his previous insurer and was also able to add legal expenses & terrorism cover and increase the Property Owners Liability to £5 million and still save money.

The freeholder changed to the Property Insurance Centre at renewal. Thanks to Mr Khan, the leaseholders in the block are now paying a
greatly reduced portion of the insurance which was annually passed to them by the freeholder.

Mr Khan has since insured his own contents within his flat with Property Insurance Centre and again saved whilst doing so.

block insurance case study (3)
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