Home insurance: Bedrooms and No Claims

We've just extended our house, converting the loft to add an extra (5th) bedroom.  We had the option to add a 6th bedroom but we actually value the storage space we previously had in the loft more, so we've left that extra space as a store room.  There is a small obscured window in the store room (and only the top vent is allowed to open due to planning restrictions). I'd never see it suitable to use as a bedroom as it's a very dark room with limited ventilation and therefore think of my house as a 5 bed house - but does anyone think this should be classed as a 6 bed for insurance purposes?  It would otherwise be large enough as a small bedroom.

 Due to the size of works, we moved out temporarily and had specialist self build insurance in place (no standard home insurer would insure us due to the extensive works).  Now that I'm running some cost comparisons, I'm being asked how many years no claims I have.  It was 7 up to the point of getting the self build insurance, and we've not made any claims on that either so technically we are 8 years claim free.  But I'm not sure if the specialist insurance would count as a 'break in cover' and set us back to 0 years claim free?

Lastly, we have a little flat that we let out.  Last year we had a buildings insurance claim on that property - we don't live there but we own the property and hold the insurance policy (it's a block policy and we are not specifically named on it).  Do claims on that property affect our main residence?

Comments

  • Sandtree
    Sandtree Posts: 10,628 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Your freeholder made a claim off their insurance not you so that side of things is fine.

    The rules on "bedrooms" are a bit awkward to say the least and often comes down to what the room would be advertised as if an estate agent were listing it for sale. Did you require planning permission or such for the conversion? If so is a use of the room specified?

    If I were in your shoes I'd do an online quote with continuous cover assumption etc and before buying telephone the company you are interested in and make sure they are happy with all aspects of the approach.
  • City_Girl_3
    City_Girl_3 Posts: 28 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    @Sandtree, thank you.  Good point - on the planning application the use was stated as a store room, so I guess that helps to back up my view that it's not really a bedroom.  And calling them before buying sounds like a sensible approach.  Thanks!
  • City_Girl_3
    City_Girl_3 Posts: 28 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    Updating this thread for the benefit of anyone who might be in a similar position.
    NFU have said they do need to record the claim on the rental flat and it did have an impact on cost.
    Direct Line said they don't need to know about this.  Most important is that we've never made a claim in our home(s).
    So definitely need to call the insurer before buying as it really depends on the insurer.
  • I was reading through my renewals i noticed it said 4 bedrooms but i have repurposed my existing front room as a bedroom as my husband is having issues walking up stairs. i told the insurance company this and my premium has gone up 13 pounds a month!
    no rhyme nor reason. but insurance company make the money in both ways?
  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 10,186 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Name Dropper
    nuzhatF said:
    I was reading through my renewals i noticed it said 4 bedrooms but i have repurposed my existing front room as a bedroom as my husband is having issues walking up stairs. i told the insurance company this and my premium has gone up 13 pounds a month!
    no rhyme nor reason. but insurance company make the money in both ways?
    There are two types of home insurance policies:

    1) Sum insured
    2) Bedroom rated

    In the former you will declare that your property will cost £125,321 to rebuild and your contents is worth £56,500 and the insurer prices based on this information.

    In the second they have fixed limits, normally substantial ones, for example M&S Standard is £1m rebuild and £100k contents and so instead of quoting based on the limits you want they quote on the size of the property you have. Traditionally this was done by the number of bedrooms you have (hence the name) but some now use the count of bathrooms and reception rooms as well.

    If you have a bedroom rated policy its inevitable that your premiums will increase if you increase the number of bedrooms even if its by subdividing a large room or converting another room to a bedroom.
  • dunstonh
    dunstonh Posts: 116,231 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker
    edited 7 December 2022 at 2:46PM
    nuzhatF said:
    I was reading through my renewals i noticed it said 4 bedrooms but i have repurposed my existing front room as a bedroom as my husband is having issues walking up stairs. i told the insurance company this and my premium has gone up 13 pounds a month!
    no rhyme nor reason. but insurance company make the money in both ways?

    That is completely logical and expected.   If you have a bedroom rated policy then increasing the number of bedrooms increases the cost of the insurance.   If you have a sum insured policy and you are not changing the sum insured then there would be no cost difference.

    Just because you don't understand something doesn't mean there is no rhyme or reason.

    I am an Independent Financial Adviser (IFA). The comments I make are just my opinion and are for discussion purposes only. They are not financial advice and you should not treat them as such. If you feel an area discussed may be relevant to you, then please seek advice from an Independent Financial Adviser local to you.
Meet your Ambassadors

Categories

  • All Categories
  • 342.9K Banking & Borrowing
  • 250K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 449.6K Spending & Discounts
  • 235K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 607.7K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 172.9K Life & Family
  • 247.7K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.9K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards