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How your external walls affect your building insurance premiums

How your external walls affect your building insurance premiums

You probably don't give much thought to your external walls and what they're made from. But did you know that the material used can affect how much you pay for your insurance? Read our guide to find out how.

Chris King
From the Home team
minute read
posted 19 DECEMBER 2019

How will my external walls affect my buildings insurance?

Your buildings insurance is there to cover the cost of rebuilding your home. In the event of a fire, flood or even subsidence, a complete rebuild might be the only way to repair the damage. So, your insurance provider must consider what your home is made from and reflect this in the cost of your premiums.

Your house will typically be built with external and internal walls. In short, the external walls protect you from the elements and usually support the structure of your home, while internal walls are typically for more cosmetic purposes.

When you consider that fire, flooding and subsidence account for 48% of domestic property insurance claims, it's a good idea to have the right cover in place.

Just how many types of wall are there?

You'd be forgiven for thinking that a wall is a wall – few of us spend much time pondering what it's made from. But your internal and external walls can be constructed from a variety of materials, whether that's brick, stone or concrete, or something less conventional – like glass, timber or metal or even rammed earth or straw bales.

Which materials affect my building insurance premiums?

Bricks are hardwearing, plentiful and easy to find, which may lower the cost of your insurance premiums. Specific types of stone, such as flint or granite, are also hardwearing but can be expensive to source (especially if yours is an old property that must be rebuilt in a certain way).

Even if your walls are built using a seemingly everyday material, if your insurance provider considers it 'not normal', you're likely to pay a higher premium.

How do I know what my walls are made from?

If you commissioned a survey on your house when you bought it, the report will probably tell you what the external walls are made from. But in most cases, you'll be able to tell just by looking at it.

What happens if I don't tell my insurance provider what my external walls are made from?

Different insurance providers will have their own ideas about what constitutes an 'unconventional' material, so shop around. And make sure you're as honest and accurate as possible when it comes to getting a quote.

Sifting through the rubble – getting the right buildings insurance

No one ever thought sorting out their home insurance was fun, and we don't pretend it is, but we are very good at comparing it. If you start a quote online, we'll ask you a few simple questions about your home and do the searching for you. Everything we bring to the table should match your needs, leaving you to simply compare and choose.

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