You might have been told that your house needs underpinning or you may be considering purchasing property that you know to have unstable foundations. In either case it’s important to know what underpinning is and how it can benefit you. Having a property underpinned can strengthen its foundations a lot and therefore add to its value and make getting insurance a lot easier.
What is Underpinning?
Underpinning is a process where new foundations are inserted underneath the current ones. The aim is to strengthen the foundations and therefore decrease the risk of subsidence. Sometimes you may be able to claim for underpinning on your home insurance policy but this will vary depending on who you have your insurance with.
What is Subsidence?
The most common reason that people have underpinning carried out on a property is because of subsidence. Subsidence is where a building will sink into the ground because it’s on unstable foundations. A lot of properties in the UK are at risk of subsidence because of a variety of factors. One of the main causes of subsidence is dry weather. When there’s little rainfall, the soil dries up and begines to swell and crack.
If there are a lot of large trees and shrubs near your property then this can further increase the risk. The reason for this is that any plant with long roots will extend them to look for moisture in the soil causing it to crack even more.
What Are The Warning Signs?
One of the main warning signs of subsidence is cracks appearing on the walls, door frames and window frames of a property. It cannot always be assumed that cracks are a result of subsidence but if they are approximately 1 inch in length and appear in several different spots around the property then there’s a good chance there is subsidence. It’s always a good idea to call in an expert to assess your property if you’re uncertain.
Where to Find Underpinned Property Insurance
If you own a property that is underpinned then you may have a little bit of trouble getting a regular home insurance policy that will cover you for subsidence. In this case it’s a good idea to get a specialist underpinned property insurance policy from a specialist provider. Finding insurance providers who offer underpinned property insurance should not be too difficult. A Google search will give you a lot of providers to choose from.
One of the best ways to go about getting quotes for underpinned property insurance is to use an insurance comparison service. These have become extremely popular in recent years as they allow you to get all your quotes from one place rather than having to contact different insurance providers individually.