27 July 2021

What you need to know when buying a Thatch Home

By Steve Moores, Dip CII CLIENT DIRECTOR

Insuring a thatched home is more complicated than insuring a standard home. Insurers will ask a lot more questions.

Before you try to get an insurance quote, it’s worth doing a bit of homework about your new home. You should also think in advance about what risk improvements you might be happy to undertake

Here are some of the questions insurers will ask you, so look out for these when you view the home or when you speak to the vendor:

  • What type of thatch is it? (such as Norfolk Reed, Combed Wheat, Long Straw, or Devon Reed)
  • When was the property last thatched?
  • When was the thatch last inspected by a professional thatcher?
  • Is there a smoke detector at the highest point of the roof void?
  • Note the location and number of smoke detectors. Are they British Standard-marked? Are they battery-operated or mains wired?
  • You’ll need fire extinguishers in place on the date you move in. Will the vendors leave theirs? Are they in date?
  • When was the chimney last swept? When was it last inspected by a HETAS-qualified engineer?
  • How high is the top of the chimney above the ridge?
  • Is the chimney lined? If so, what type of lining does it have?
  • Ask where the nearest water source (such as a pond, pool or fire hydrant) is
  • As with all home insurance, check the security, especially the door and window locks
  • Ask about the intruder alarm. Was it professionally installed? Is it maintained? Does it just ring a bell or go through to a central station?
  • Finally and most importantly, most insurers will need an Electrical Installation Condition Report dated within the last five years.

If you’re thinking of buying a thatched home and need some insurance advice, then call us on 020 7543 2801.

Find out more about our Thatched Home Insurance

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