Your Guide to Insurance & Warranties for Timber Frame Builds

Self-Build Zone’s Jake Fitness explains how to get the best cover for a timber building project
Self-Build Zone Insurance & Warranties
by Self-Build Zone
26th February 2024

Timber construction has seen a surge in popularity among self builders in recent years, offering sustainability, affordability and aesthetic appeal. Whether it’s timber frame, structural insulated panels (SIPS) or oak frame construction, the allure of a modern and efficient build is undeniable.

Embarking on a timber build is about more than just selecting a suitable design and materials package, however. As with any project, you’ll want to safeguard your investment through adequate insurance and warranties.

In this article, we explore the key considerations around timber construction for self builders and how to protect your project.

Timber System Benefits

Modern timber homes are precisely crafted, often offsite in factory settings or workshops, adhering to stringent quality standards that ensure durability and structural integrity. Backed by many certifications and guarantees, these innovative systems are a blend of craftsmanship and technological advancement – empowering self builders to realise their dream homes with confidence now and in the future.

Timber construction is considered a mainstream approach and offers numerous advantages, including sustainability and quick assembly on site. Nevertheless, it’s essential to understand the risks associated with this type of construction, and ensure they’re managed effectively. Timber can be susceptible to hazards such as fire, decay and insect infestation.

From a warranty perspective, the focus will be on selecting quality materials and using proper installation methods to minimise future risks to the structure. These aspects will be assessed and picked up via design assessments and during the build phase through technical audits and surveys.

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Types of Insurance for Timber Builds

Securing comprehensive insurance coverage is essential for mitigating risks throughout your project and safeguarding your timber-built home; even after you complete. When it comes to creating your dream house, you need to think further than buildings and contents insurance.

Structural Warranty

A structural warranty ensures peace of mind by protecting newly built properties against structural defects that may arise post-construction. It’s suitable for anything from a whole house to a conversion or home extension. A standard structural warranty usually provides a 10-year period of cover, with longer warranties available depending on the scope of the project.

Self-Build Zone warranties are reviewed by our in-house survey services team from the design stage onwards, to minimise the chance of defects. No special pre-warrants are needed for timber frame projects, but we do require an installation certificate (or similar) to show the system has been built to plan. Every installer is likely to provide something different, so we’re flexible in terms of the details this certificate includes.

Site Insurance

During the build, it’s crucial to have site insurance in place to guard against risks such as theft, vandalism and accidents.

This covers the cost of materials, equipment and liability claims arising from construction activities. Self build site insurance is necessary to protect your investment when carrying out any renovation, conversion, extension or new build. Site insurance protects the works, existing structure and rest of the property. It’s usually taken out once contracts have been exchanged or before work starts on your site.

Public Liability Insurance

This provides coverage against third-party injury or property damage resulting from activities related to your build. Whether it’s a visitor injured on your construction site or damage caused to neighbouring properties, public liability insurance offers financial protection and legal assistance and can be included in your site insurance policy.

Protect Your Project

By understanding the risks, securing appropriate coverage and adhering to best practice, self builders can enjoy all the benefits of timber construction. Putting the right insurance and warranties in place means you’ll be able to confidently embark on your timber home building project, knowing that your most important investment is well-protected for years to come.

Jake Fitness is team leader at Self-Build Zone, which offers a comprehensive range of specialist self build, renovation, extension and site insurance cover, as well as self build warranties. Self-Build Zone only uses A-rated insurers for all its policies. Call 0345 230 9874 or visit Self-Build Zone’s website for more information.

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