Inheritance and knowing the rebuild value of your home

Whenever you insure your home you should always have enough to cover the cost of rebuilding it if it is completely destroyed in the course of events like a fire. If it's your own home, the rebuild cost should be on your mortgage evaluation already, but if you've inherited a home you might not be aware of the true cost you need to be insured for.

Accuracy matters

It's worth remembering that the rebuild cost of a property is not the same as the sale price or current market value of the home. More often than not it will be lower.  It can potentially be more than the current sale price if the property is of a particular period or heritage that makes sourcing materials and labour particularly costly.

Working out an accurate cost of rebuild will show you whether you're currently paying too much for insurance cover you don't need. And importantly, it will also show you whether you're paying too little and allow you to rectify it before you end up with a large insurance shortfall and an even larger bill.

Making changes

If you've inherited a house and choose to keep hold of it as a second home or rental property, you may decide to make renovations and modifications to it.  Any changes you make, be it a remodelling of old fixtures and fittings, a new layout in the living space, or an extension, will change the cost of the rebuild.

Remember to review this across the project and get a full re-evaluation made at the end of the work so that you can speak to your NFU insurer about your new policy requirements.

Where should you start

Regardless of whether it's your home or one you have inherited, we recommend that you review the rebuild cost on a regular basis to make sure the figure is up-to-date with current prices for materials and labour. If it's an unusal or listed property with unique architectural features, you might need to seek assistance of a professional surveyor to help you with an accurate price.

Take a look at sites such as English HeritageHistoric ScotlandCadw, and the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (depending on where you live) for further information and advice on heritage properties.

And take time to take a look at usefull online tools and guides to help you calculate the true cost of a rebuild.  The Building Cost Information Service's house rebuilding cost calculator is great for more general rebuild guidance.  Should you need professional help then the Royal Instituation of Chartered Surveyors has a full list of contacts to help you assess more complex projects and buildings.

If you have any further questions, or want to review your insurance policies in light of rebuild estimates, please contact your NFU adviser.