When most people think of non-standard houses, flat roofs or homes with wooden cladding come to mind. However, the long list of non-standard constructions may surprise you! In fact, many aren’t even aware their home is considered non-standard, which can prove to be a problem as specialist properties require customised insurance. That’s why we’ve created a list of what classifies properties as non-standard, to safeguard your house and help you choose the right insurance policy.
When most people think of non-standard constructions, they don’t think of traditional brick and mortar houses. However, the way your property is occupied also affects whether it’s considered a non-standard home. For example, if you use it primarily as a holiday home, it’s considered a specialist property and so requires customised holiday home insurance. Likewise, if your home is vacant for over 40 days, even if it’s just while you’re on holidays, it would be considered an unoccupied house.
Having a different construction, like a flat roof or wooden cladding is what most think of when they consider non-standard homes. After all, these are built using different materials and techniques, and have vastly different appearances. The resulting structures cause these homes to have unique needs, such as how flat roofs need to be monitored more carefully for damage like ponding or leaks.
3. Materials Used
The classification of your house also depends on the building materials used. Many materials are considered non-standard. This includes homes made from eco materials, like grass, trees, mud or even thatched roofs and log cabins. Likewise, budget homes made from pre-fabricated materials are considered non-standard as they don’t last as long as stone or brick properties. As a result, specialist insurance, such as thatched house insurance, is essential to protect your property if you built with non-standard materials.
Using your home as a business space, or having a business attached, classifies it as non-standard because it raises unique considerations. For one, the increased number of visitors increases the potential for public liability claims and raises the risk of theft or damage occurring. However, what you might not realise is that using a spare room for office space, having clients over for a quick afternoon meeting, or running a child-minding service from home can also change your property’s classification.
The location of your property can also classify it as a non-standard construction. After all, some areas are prone to natural disasters, such as flooding or earthquakes or they could be located in remote areas with limited access to support from police and fire stations, which can increase the risk of theft and damage. Some properties, like chalets, often combine both these factors, making specialist chalet insurance even more important.
5. Construction work
If you’re having building work completed on your house, it categorises it as a non-standard property. This includes getting a new property built from scratch, having your existing home renovated, or even just adding on a conservatory as a side project. This work can invalidate your existing insurance policy and should be declared to your insurance provider as soon as possible, so they can advise you on how to acquire specialist cover.