Timber Frame Home Insurance

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What is a timber frame?

The term ‘timber frame construction’ itself is open to differing interpretations and is dependent upon the time when it was built – most new-build properties tend to be constructed of brick over a wood frame with plasterboard inner walls and with a conventional tiled roof. In contrast, older timber frame properties may have had a timber frame that had various types of ‘infill’, such as render or wattle and daub.

timber frame insurance

Modern timber frame homes that are pre-fabricated off-site offer significant savings in both construction time and the cost of building a new home. With building regulations changing to accommodate these new types of property and their specific safety requirements, ‘timber frame kits’ are becoming increasingly and understandably popular. Many mainstream home insurance companies will these days accept that newly-built timber frame houses are of a sufficiently high standard that they may be prepared to offer you a buildings insurance quote at standard terms. This is fine, but you should not assume that this is the case, and in any event, if you are aware that your home has a timber frame construction, you need to inform your insurance company from the outset.

Why use timber frame insurance?

Timber frame homes come with many advantages, such as being more eco-friendly, cheaper to build, and often more affordable to heat. Despite this, most standard insurance companies view timber frame homes as a higher risk of a claim, generally because of the higher risk of fire spread, which can be costly.

Historically, timber frames have also been at a higher risk of rot, infestation and damp. However, building techniques and practices have evolved, making timber frame builds less vulnerable to these circumstances. Furthermore, evolution in building practices has also increased the speed of build and the durability of the houses.

Many insurers have differing views on how to underwrite a timber frame home insurance policy and it is not until you read the small print that you may find some significant exclusions, including your choice of heating, the use of open fires and how much wood is used in the overall construction of the property.

Common claims for timber frame home insurance include:

  • Fire risk: Despite fire-proofing regulations, timber is still a fast-burning material and a significant fire risk. Commonly, insurance providers require fire prevention measures before agreeing to insure the property, such as fire alarms and fire-retardant systems.
  • Flood risk: Timber framed homes are often more vulnerable to water damage than homes built with bricks. It is not uncommon to find getting flood insurance difficult, especially if your timber-framed home is in a high flood-risk area.
  • Timber decay: Timber retains moisture that leads to decay, often causing rot and beetle infestation.

Insuring a timber frame house with a thatched roof

Much like timber frames, thatched roofs are at a much higher risk of fire spread. If your timber frame home also has a thatched roof, please consider enquiring through our thatched roof insurance page.

What does timber frame home insurance cover?

Common types of cover included with timber frame home insurance include:

  • Buildings insurance: This covers damage to your timber frame home’s physical structure, its fixtures and often its fittings, commonly including roofs, chimneys, walls and windows.
  • Contents insurance: This covers your possessions, such as furniture, clothing and electricals. It is common for any personal, specified item to have a maximum claimable value, typically £1,000. If you have any personal items worth more than £1,000, please discuss this with your timber frame home insurance provider.
  • Accidental damage: Cover can usually be extended to include accidental damage, both to the buildings insurance and/or the contents insurance sections of your timber frame home insurance policy.
  • Legal expenses: You can protect yourself against the potential cost of litigation as a homeowner by selecting legal expenses cover.

How can we help?

Frequently asked questions

Do I legally need timber frame home insurance?

Like regular home insurance, timber frame home insurance is not legally required, although you may find that your mortgage provider insists upon buildings insurance being in force as a condition of their mortgage offer. However, due to your timber frame property’s risk of fire spread, repairs and claims can become costly without appropriate cover.

Is timber frame home insurance expensive?

Owing to the heightened risk of fire spread with timber frame homes, insurance can be more expensive than a brick-built home. However, there are ways you can keep the cost of your insurance down, such as:

  • Ensure your property is regularly and effectively maintained
  • Make sure gutters aren’t blocked or leaking
  • Ensure the home has good ventilation
  • Ensure you have an operational fire alarm

What if my timber frame property is a holiday home?

Timber frame homes are often used as UK holiday homes, such as log cabins. If your timber frame home is a holiday home, please enquire through our holiday home insurance page.

Enquire through QuoteRack for timber frame home insurance

If you have explored other avenues of enquiry in your search for timber frame home insurance, then you are welcome to submit your details through the QuoteRack website, without cost or obligation to proceed when you receive your insurance quote. Simply click the 'Get a Quote' button to submit your details to insurance brokers who specialise in timber frame home insurance.

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"QuoteRack were able to put me in touch with experts in timber frame property insurance and who could help with my new timber frame house. Exceptional service."

"Most insurers consider timber frame properties, especially those built using the latest timber frame construction methods, to be a standard buildings insurance risk and will quote accordingly"

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