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Site insurance for barn conversion


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I am about to purchase a timber-framed barn (next week!! ?) for conversion. I'm looking to get some site insurance, but insurers keep asking what the rebuild cost is for the barn. Being a completely empty barn, I'd imagine the effective rebuild cost (prior to any work starting) would be zero, what with a barn conversion typically costing more than a new build. I've heard from an insurance company that the "rebuild cost" should be the figure it would actually cost to rebuild the barn in its current state, which would be pointless, because if it, for example, burnt down or collapsed completely, we wouldn't rebuild the barn then convert it to a house, we'd effectively be doing the far easier route of a completely new build. Plus it's not easy to get a quote to build a timber barn.


But obviously as the conversion progresses, the rebuild cost of the project will increase.


Anyway, can anyone recommend an insurance provider? (Or who to avoid?!). Some sections of wall may require underpinning, which seems to frighten away every insurance provider.


Thanks in advance for any help!


~ Paul

Edited by hellopaul
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I used Self Build Insurance T/A Trade Direct Insurance Services Ltd. (Godalming)


I never had to claim, so difficult to recommend, but it was underwritten by Zurich, so assume OK.


They do need a rebuild value for the original structure, as well as a contract value for the conversion. There's nothing to say you would get planning permission for a new build if you "lost" the original structure.


A barn conversion local to me had around a third of the structure fall in during a gale, mid-conversion, and the LPA immediately put a stop notice on them. They weren't allowed to continue until the original structure was reinstated and they proved via an SE report they were still achieving 65% (I think) original timber present in the conversion.

This happened just as I was starting mine, so prompted me to have all my insurances in place.

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