Building Work – Does Your Trades Person Have Insurance?

Every year in the UK there are roughly 100,000 complaints made against rogue traders, and many of these are related to building work.

Your existing buildings insurance cover may protect you against any public liability claims for accidents that happen on your property which are your fault. However, your builder or other contractor should have their own public liability and employers’ liability insurance in place.

Below is a look at the potential damage an uninsured contractor could do in your home, leaving you to pick up the tab.

  • Structural damage

Your buildings insurance policy will usually protect you against structural damage caused by things like high winds, but not against a builder damaging your home during the course of their work.

Even if your home insurance did cover this, there’s no reason why you should have to claim on your buildings insurance policy because of someone else’s poor workmanship.

Structural damage caused by builders can include things like taking out supporting walls and not putting a new roof on correctly.

  • Accidental damage to contents

If you’re planning to stay in your home when building works are taking place, the contractors may accidentally damage things in your property. Again, you shouldn’t have to make a claim for this on your contents insurance policy, as the builders should have their own cover, or at least offer to pay for any damages out of their own pockets. In any case, your home insurance policy may not even include accidental damage cover as standard.

  • Water damage and flooding

Having work carried out in your kitchen or bathroom can result in water damage or flooding if the contractor isn’t up to the task. This can lead to all sorts of problems which can cost a lot of money to put right.

When you try to make a claim on your home insurance policy, you’ll be asked how the damage occurred so it’s best to make sure you see the contractor’s insurance policy documents before you let them even start work on your home.


If you’re in any doubt as to what your contents and buildings insurance does and doesn’t cover, make sure you ask your insurer before having any work done in your home.

Choosing the cheapest building contractor and not asking to see valid insurance documents is a big risk to take with your home and if they make a serious and costly mistake, you may never see them again.



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