A guide to property indemnity insurance

Property indemnity insurance is all about protection against loss or harm.

It can work in two ways. It will either offer you protection from being held financially responsible for any harm, damage or loss suffered by others, or it will protect you personally from loss, harm or damage.

property indemnity insurance guide

What is indemnity insurance when selling a house?

An indemnity policy can be a great option to protect you from any future repercussions.

It may also be recommended by your solicitor if they feel there may be a danger of future liability. Indemnity insurance policies seem to be increasingly common in the property selling process.

What does indemnity insurance cover?

Indemnity insurance can be purchased to cover a wide range of circumstances. The most common indemnity insurance policies purchased when selling a house are:

  • Planning permission – if planning permission paperwork for any building work is absent or incomplete.
  • Building regulations – if building regulations paperwork is sparse or missing.
  • Restrictive covenant policyRestrictive covenants can cover a number of different areas. Some may dictate what you can do with your front lawn. Others might dictate that you can only sell your property to a local resident. An indemnity insurance policy can protect you if it is found that you have inadvertently broken a restrictive covenant.

What is an indemnity insurance policy when buying a house?

Buying a house is a huge commitment, both personally and financially. As such, most buyers will want to ensure that the property they are planning to buy is a wise investment.

Solicitors can carry out all of the usual searches and request all the official paperwork relating to a property, but unfortunately, from time to time, property buyers find themselves with a nasty surprise and more responsibility than they planned for.

Indemnity insurance policies can be purchased to cover all sorts of areas when buying a house.

Here are some of the most common indemnity insurance policies for the purchase of a property:

Pre-existing building work or extensions

This will cover anyone buying a house with an extension without building regulations or other relevant paperwork/permission. It will protect the policy holder from any costs that may arise if it is found that the work was carried out without the necessary permissions. In some cases you may simply be required to apply for planning permission retrospectively. In other circumstances you may be required to remove the extension (at your own cost). If you have an indemnity insurance policy in place, it should not only cover the cost of removing the extension, it should also compensate you for any decrease in the value of your property as a result of removing it.

Restrictive covenant

Similarly, with a restrictive covenant indemnity insurance policy property owners are not financially liable for any restrictive covenants that have been broken by previous property owners. With an indemnity insurance policy in place, you will also be covered financially for any legal expenses, any building work required, and any negative impact on your property value.

Chancel repair liability

If your home is close to a local parish church, you may be called upon to fund church building repairs. Chancel repair liability indemnity insurance will protect property owners from this cost.

Right of access indemnity insurance

This type of indemnity insurance policy protects you if, for example, part of your property or utilities servicing your property can only be reached by going across your neighbour’s property. With an indemnity insurance policy in place you will be protected from legal costs if your neighbour attempts to prevent you from having access.

Why should I get an indemnity policy?

Although claims are rare, people are now more willing to take action. This is especially true if they feel they have been misled by the former owner, or if they face large financial bills to rectify a situation.

Indemnity insurance policies, although rarely required to pay out, are seen as a relatively cheap way to protect the buyer or seller from any future liability. They will also reduce any delay to the sale that may be caused by trying to resolve any concerns.

An indemnity policy is something that your mortgage provider may request in order to protect their financial interests. If an issue is raised about the property, it may affect its value and result in financial loss.

Example of indemnity insurance

Indemnity insurance policies will vary due to the wide spectrum of circumstances they can cover. You can view an example of a Chancel Indemnity Insurance policy below.

property indemnity insurance

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Beth Lane

Beth Lane

As an integral part of the marketing team, Beth is responsible for creating Quick Move Now’s external communications and dealing with national and regional press enquiries.

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