Owning a home with a flat roof may be an appealing option for you. Being able to use a roof terrace in summer can seem like a big draw. However, finding insurance for a home with a flat roof can prove to be quite tricky, especially here in the UK.
In this guide we will look at why it is harder to get cheap home insurance deals if you have a flat roof, and the best ways you can try to bring your insurance costs down.
In This Guide:
- Why is flat roof insurance more expensive?
- How do insurers define a flat roof?
- How do I know if I can get flat roof home insurance?
- How to get cheaper flat roof insurance
Why is flat roof insurance more expensive?
Homes with flat roofs face an increased risk of suffering from weather damage, with frequent, heavy rain and ice causing leaks. Therefore, they often require more frequent repairs than sloped roofs as the water often has nowhere to run off to. Frequent wet weather in the UK makes this a particular issue for insurers over here, unlike in warmer climates.
These increased risks translate to higher buildings insurance premiums.
On top of this, homes with flat roofs are also perceived to be easier to burgle. This means that your contents insurance premiums could be higher as well.
How do insurers define a flat roof?
Insurers in most cases will define flat roofs as being pitched at 10 degrees or less. Having a small part of your roof being flat usually is not a problem, but if over 25% of your roof is flat, you may find that most insurers may not be able to offer you any cover at all.
The more higher the portion of your roof that is flat, the higher the risk of damage, and premiums will increase accordingly. A house with a roof that's 25% flat will cost more than one with a fully pitched roof, but less than one with a 50% flat roof.
How do I know if I can get flat roof home insurance?
When you apply for home insurance you will usually be asked a series of questions about your home, including how much of your roof is flat. There are a few ways to check this:
- Google Earth – Doing a quick search of your home on Google Earth can help you determine the proportion of your roof which is flat. You can use the ruler tool to estimate square footage.
- Get it professionally surveyed – You could ask a builder or a building surveyor to accurately measure out how much of your roof is flat, although this will cost you.
- Check housing documents – If you look over the documentation from when you bought your home, such as the homebuyer's survey, this should have the details and measurements of the building when it was bought. If you have
It is important to remember that you must give your insurance provider as accurate a picture as possible when you are signing up for your policy. If you provide misleading information, you may not be able to gain any compensation when making a claim.
How to get cheaper flat roof insurance
Having a flat roof on your home does not necessarily mean that you are doomed to prohibitively expensive premiums and sky-high repair costs. There are a few specialist insurers who may be able to provide you with home insurance after taking into consideration other factors, such as the condition of your home and your location.
There are also number of steps you can take to improve your chances of getting affordable home insurance deals if you have a flat roof, such as:
- Ensuring that your roof is well maintained – Most insurers will require you to have the condition of your roof checked every few years to make sure that it is in good condition, and some also want your roof to be relaid every 10 or so years. Regular inspections will save you money in the long run.
- Ensuring that your roof is made of the best material – If your roof is made from a strong and durable material, such as EPDM, you may be able to build a better case for getting cheaper home insurance.
- Having the rest of the home in good condition – If the rest of your home is in good condition, and has a history of low maintenance costs, you might offset some of the added cost associated with the flat roof.