Carriage House Ownership

A coach house is a flat/apartment above usually 2 or 3 garages or carports. When you buy a carriage house property, you are normally buying the freehold, and so it would be up to you to insure the entire building. As a leaseholder, one of the garages or carports would be yours, and the rest on 999 Year Peppercorn leasehold to the neighbours.

Home insurance Koetshuis

As a Freeholder, you are responsible for the insurance for the entire building. You must insure the property as a ‘Coach House’. NOT as a flat or apartment. You are required to insure the garages and carports on behalf of the leaseholder – the Property Insurance you need is very specific and a niche product that is just as easy to purchase online as regular Home Insurance. It is best to obtain advice from a specialized insurer who can guide you in this.

Where can I buy specific insurance?

There are a few carriage house real estate specialists around – you’ll need to target your online searches and make sure you shop around. Due to the nature of the property, these insurance policies require specific insurance and costs vary widely between providers/brokers. You also need to make sure that you are not burdened with administrative costs.

Is contents insurance for a coach house expensive?

No! It will take some research to make sure you have the right policy, but it’s not expensive. It is not expensive, provided you speak to the right insurance broker!

Do leaseholders of the garage have to contribute to the Coach House Insurance?

This is determined by what is stated in the title deed of the carriage house and what is stated in the Peppercorn Leasehold Document. It is normal for each leaseholder to pay a small percentage of the home insurance – but this is normally a nominal contribution – and this only applies to the home portion of the policy.

The costs of the contents insurance should be deducted to calculate what the leaseholder owes. If you need full home and contents insurance You should have a joint policy for the two elements as this controls the total cost for you. In the event of a claim you only have to pay 1 deductible – instead of 2 policies and 2 deductibles.

It would normally at least double the cost of the insurance if you had a separate policy for home insurance and contents insurance.

Best advice

The best advice would be to talk to a specialist who knows this type of property and is familiar with your insurance needs. No point calling a huge call center where the consultants have no idea what a carriage house property is! You need to talk to someone who is clear about the legal obligations you face as a carriage house owner. This would normally be a UK Insurance Broker.

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These types of policies are very simple and straightforward to set up, provided you talk to a specialist, and it won’t cost you a fortune. It may seem daunting at first, but don’t worry! Landlord insurance is also available for these types of properties – provided you speak to the right company! Landlord insurance for carriage house properties is no more expensive than regular insurance for any type of rented property.

Just remember to focus your research on the specific product you’re looking for – rather than just a generic ring around the usual household names – you won’t find it there. Ask specifically what information you need – ask specific questions so that you understand exactly what you are required to provide in terms of insurance. Garage renters are not required to take out insurance on the property – it falls solely on the shoulders of the owners.

As with all insurance documents – when purchasing your policy please review your documents to ensure your property is properly listed as a ‘Carriage House’ and the garages and/or carports are specified on the policy/Building Insurance. For example, if your property is listed as an apartment or maisonette, you should check with the insurer and may be willing to switch insurers.