If you rely on information exclusively from Government web sites, you could easily be excused for thinking that you don’t need owner builder insurance.
Why is this WRONG?
Government sources only provide information on classes of insurance that are regulated or enforced by Government. For Owner-Builders this would only apply to Warranty insurance, which in most States no longer applies to Owner-Builders (except VIC and WA).
“Owner Builder Insurance” does not refer to Warranty insurance, and like almost every other type of insurance, it’s not regulated by Government (even when it is essential).
Owner Builder Insurance should be in place for the full duration of your project. It’s a core costing item to budget for in the planning of your project. You can use our online quote tool below to obtain an estimated insurance premium.
Why do I need Owner Builder Insurance?
Ask a Registered Builder if they have Public Liability (sometimes called Legal Liability) and Contract Works (Material cover) insurance, and you can be absolutely sure they will say “of course”. Despite Owner-Builders facing the exact same insurable risks (and more), they often go without insurance.
Why do Owner-Builders fail to take out insurance?
- The confusion between this construction risk insurance and statutory warranty insurance leads many Owner Builders to think they have ticked ‘insurance’ off their lists.
- They incorrectly assume that Contractors will have all the necessary insurance, without realising that is completely impossible.
- Renovators often assume that their domestic Home insurance will also cover the project, when in reality most Home insurance policies don’t even continue to cover the House during a construction project.*
*Most domestic Home insurance policies will exclude liability or any material losses arising as a result of construction works. The majority go even further, either seriously restricting cover (for example, removal of cover for “any section of the house undergoing works”) or causing the entire policy to be invalid.
What is Owner Builder Insurance?
As an Owner-Builder you are licenced to be, and required to be, the person in charge of the construction site. In almost all cases you’ll be responsible for damages caused to third party property, but even more importantly, for injuries caused to a third party. Injuries that are serious, or even permanent, can arise on even the smallest projects.
You should take out a package that includes any of the following that are applicable to your project. Each will be included as an option on your quote.
- Contract Works and Public Liability (this is the core insurance product usually referred to as the “Owner Builder Insurance”).
- Existing Structures (for Renovators needing to have the actual House covered, which will usually be the case)
- Voluntary Workers (group income protection and medical expenses cover for the owner-builder and unpaid friends and family)
- Workers Compensation (you will need this. See here, under “Do you recommend Workers Compensation” for a detailed explanation)
- Tools and Equipment (you can’t insure equipment belonging to contractors, but you need this cover if using your own tools on site)
ABE Education is proud to recommend Coverforce Allrisk for insurance, due to their specialist expertise, great products and competitive pricing. ABE Education is a referrer only for insurance products, and cannot provide advice in relation to the cover you may need. This information and quote are provided by Coverforce Allrisk Pty Ltd (CAR:001244500), authorised representative of Coverforce Partners Pty Ltd (AFSL 245377)