Are you properly insured?
Many people don’t realise the importance of having specialist insurance for their park home or holiday home, potentially leading to frustration when it comes to making a claim. Traditional home insurance policies can be found lacking at this time, so our A-Z directory is designed to show you the many specialist insurers who can help you to get the perfect insurance cover for your home.
Why do I need specialist insurance?
When moving into a new park home, some people chose to continue with the insurer who was covering their previous brick-built home. However, park homes and holiday homes are very different beasts to traditional homes, coming with their own unique benefits as well as a few unique areas where traditional insurance may not be up to the job of offering the correct cover.
Looking at the positives first, park and holiday homes are usually located in secure communities, with very little crime. Specialist insurers are well aware of this and can offer cheaper cover as a result. Park homes in particular are often occupied by older people are well used to looking after a home, with less chance of damage inside the home from misuse, especially by children..
Other unique benefits also include the timber construction of park homes, meaning they can be relatively cheap to repair in the event of any damage which is covered by insurance.
On the riskier side, this timber construction can be more of an issue when it comes to fire damage, a factor which specialist insurers will also take into account.
Another risk can be the location of the site, particularly with holiday homes. That nice seaside or riverside spot might make for a perfect holiday, but there can sometimes be a greater risk of flooding and, again, specialist park and holiday home insurers are well aware of this and can offer advice as well as special cover. They have maps showing which locations are at more risk of flooding than others.
So, to sum up, a specialist insurer will be much more aware of both the problems and benefits when it comes to park or holiday home living. As a result they can offer you tailor made cover so that you are properly insured. The other advantage is that specialist insurers are often much smaller operations than the large companies that insure traditional homes, so when you contact the company you are more likely to get a friendly welcome, as well as speaking to someone who is a real expert rather than just an inexperienced call centre operative.
The insider perspective
To get the ‘industry insider’ perspective of why specialist insurance is best for your park home or holiday caravan, we spoke to Paul Baker, who has decades of experience in the industry and now runs his own company, called Paul Baker Insurance Services (full details in the listings that follow).
Paul explained, “Because park homes are built on a chassis and predominantly constructed out of wood, they are regarded by most insurance companies as ‘non standard’ construction properties, which of course they are! For this reason, many insurers will not be willing to insure them and so the market tends to be dominated by a relatively small number of specialist insurance intermediaries who offer their own bespoke products, which will be underwritten by an insurance company such as Axa, Allianz or Zurich.
He continued, “The market is also relatively small, around 80,000 homes, which tends to restrict the appetite of many insurers and on-line insurance providers. Never the less, this is a very competitive market place, with specialist providers offering a good choice of policy cover and benefits, and in some cases an in-house claims handling service too. The advantage of using a specialist intermediary is that they should be offering you a product which meets your needs, and they should also have a good knowledge of park homes, their construction, the ownership model, the law and the particular risks to which this type of home is exposed.”
What type of insurance is best?
As with any insurance policies, there are a number of permutations to consider when insuring your park or holiday home. Your specialist broker will be able to talk you through all the options of their own policies. For instance, do you want to pay for ‘new-for-old’ cover, where your home and/or its contents are replaced by brand new items in the event of total damage?
Also you may need to decide if you want just the structure of the home covered, or all its contents as well. Then, you may also find that some policies give you the option to list any really expensive items, to make sure they are properly covered.
It’s also worth looking at the financial fact on the insurance. How much is the ‘sum insured’ for instance, which should be high enough to cover the total rebuild or replacement of you home in the event of a total loss due to fire/flowing etc.
Also, have a check to see if items such as sanitary ware are included in the policy. If you accidentally drop a hammer into the toilet bowl and smash it, then this cover will get you a replacement toilet fitted.
A specialist insurer will talk you through all the options on their policy and you should find that all eventualities that could befall a park or leisure home are already included in the policy, making for the sort of peace of mind that won’t be there of you just go for non-specialist insurance on a comparison website. The other thing to mention is that specialist insurance can actually work out cheaper than ‘cheap’ insurance sold on the net, so you can save money as well as benefitting from greater peace of mind.
Here’s your A-Z listing of insurers who specialise in the park home and holiday home market. Why not contact a few of them to see if you can get a better or cheaper quote for your home insurance?
Adrian Flux Insurance Services
East Winch Hall, East Winch, King’s Lynn, Norfolk, PE32 1HN
T: 0330 123 1232 (or 0800 369 8590 from a landline)
Helix House, High Street, Wadhurst, East Sussex TN5 6AA
T: 0800 614 849
Coast is a UK-based, family-run insurance broker providing specialist caravan insurance, park homes insurance, motorhome and campervan insurance.
The company explains, “The foundation of Coast’s success is built on our park home insurance. We have been protecting park homes and their contents for two decades, which has given us plenty of time to develop our policies to provide our customers with the best possible cover. For us, a park home insurance quote is as much about giving you peace of mind that your investment is in safe hands as it is about providing great value insurance cover – although we strive to offer that as well!
Unlike some of our other products such as caravans and motorhomes, which our customers mainly use to take a break from everyday life, park home owners tend to live there all year round, which makes finding the best insurance even more important. You need a specialist policy that will cover the home itself, its furniture and contents in the unfortunate event that something goes wrong.”
New Road, Halifax, HX1 2JZ
T: 01422 396 888
Lifesure Group Limited
3 Fenice Court, Phoenix Park, Eaton Socon, St. Neots, Cambridgeshire PE19 8EW
T: 01480 504307
Mobile Homes Insurance Service is a family owned and managed business with 40 years’ experience in the market. The company is based in Royal Leamington Spa and is able to offer cover anywhere in Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The company explains, ‘Our excellent park home insurance policy is the result of our extensive experience and expertise in the market and is designed to cover your residential park home, chalet/lodge or static caravan. We insure homes situated on both licensed residential sites and on private land.
‘Our knowledge and experience of park homes and residential sites has allowed us to create a superb insurance policy designed with you in mind. Many features you may expect to pay for as an optional extra we include as standard. Being a small, family run business operating from one office in the heart of England, we pride ourselves on having the extra touch when it comes to customer care. No call centres, no endless hold music, just straight through to a friendly voice who will talk to you like a person and chat through any queries or concerns you may have about your Insurance. Buying insurance online is quick and easy, but there is nothing quite like having a proper conversation with an expert in the industry.
They add, ‘It is increasingly common for park home insurers to simply insure all their customers for the same amount, with ‘blanket’ figures such as £500,000 or similar being offered for a set price. We take a different approach and, instead, tailor each and every policy to our customer’s particular needs. If your home costs £80,000 to replace, why pay for a policy covering you for £500,000? The result is purchasing only the cover you need at a price that makes sense, and the peace of mind knowing that the policy you have chosen has been put together with you in mind.
‘We also offer cover for static caravans, chalets/lodges and touring caravans/trailer tents, as well as Liability insurance for site owners. Mobile Homes Insurance Service is a trading name of Regent Facilities Limited, who offer a wide range of other policies, including cover for horses, trailers, commercial insurance and much more.’
National Association of Caravan Owners
T: 01255 820321
NACO, the National Association of Caravan Owners, is an independent advisory service providing advice and support to static caravan owners across the UK. Become a NACO member and you will have access to a specialist team, who are only a phone call away and ready to give static caravan advice. You will also receive a seasonal members’ magazine, can take part in the exchange link program and much more! Of particular interest to members is the static caravan insurance policy, which has been developed to meet the demands of static caravan owners nationwide.
Under the banner of Leisure Home, NACO also offer insurance for park homes, so contact them for more information if you are a park home owner. You now get an insurance quote via the website.
Portwell House, Market Place, Faringdon, Oxon, SN7 7HU
T: 01367 246136
‘Not only do we talk to our clients and offer them advice but we will also visit the park site operators and carry out a risk survey to ascertain the risk attached to the homes/site, to rate the premiums accordingly rather than going by environment agency information alone.
Park Home Assist Insurance Services
Royal House, Queenswood, Newport Pagnell Road West, Northampton, NN4 7JJ
T: 01604 946 785
Park Home Assist Insurance Services (part of Assist Insurance Services Ltd) is one of the UK’s leading providers of Park Home Insurance (also referred to as mobile home insurance), static caravan insurance, holiday lodge insurance (also known as leisure home insurance) and touring caravan insurance. The company also provides a residential park home owner’s car insurance scheme. Park Home Assist were also instrumental in the launch of the longest running ‘insurance backed’ Park Home Manufacturer’s 10 Year Structural Warranty Scheme and until recently also provided a Park Home Finance Scheme for purchasers of Park Homes.
The company explains, “Over 10 years’ experience of providing Park Home Insurance, as well as the other Park Home related products we provide, means that although we understand the Park Home Sector, probably more than any other Park Home Insurer we are never complacent and we always know there is room for improvements and change. We like to believe that with our range of park home Services, we have become the ‘One-Stop-Shop’ for park home residents. Our products and services are designed with park home owners in-mind, and you will find it hard to find a company with a better understanding of park home living, than Park Home Assist.
“We are an old fashioned, traditional business where excellent personalised service and competitive products with comprehensive cover sets us apart from the rest. The majority of our enquiries come from personal recommendation whether from friends and neighbours, park owners/operators or park home manufacturers.
“If you want to be treated like an individual with a personalised service, and without the need to work your way through a call centre, and want to deal with a company who understands Park Homes, then you need to give us a call.
What is the unique selling point for your company, compared to other insurers?
“Our policy provides a combination of excellent comprehensive cover with some unique additional benefits, coupled with very competitive premiums and a range of generous discounts. At Park Home Assist, we ensure that you only pay for what you need and the premium you pay reflects the level of cover you enjoy. You also have the added peace of mind that our policy is underwritten by certain underwriters at Lloyd’s Of London.
“Park Home Assist Insurance Services provides a wide range of products that benefit from excellent cover and significant discounts such as: Boiler and Multi Appliance Insurance; Park Home Owners Car Insurance; Static Caravan Insurance; Holiday Home Insurance; Boat Insurance
“If you want to be treated like an individual with a personalised service, without the need to work your way through a call centre, and want to deal with a company who understands Park Homes, then you need to give us a call!”
Regency House, 21 Spa Road, Gloucester GL1 1UY
T: 0800 731 9583
Parksure is part of a family run UK insurance broker; established in 1966, and has been offering comprehensive insurance, advice and service ever since.
The company explains, ‘Family run means no call centres!!! Instead, you will always speak to a member of an experienced and dedicated team, who specialise in providing quality tailor made insurance at competitive premiums. Over the last 50 years, we have gained a reputation for taking the time to give you the guidance and service you require and so rightly deserve.
‘We take the stress out of insurance by making things easy for you. There are no forms to complete, we provide immediate cover with multiple discounts and we have a 24 hours claims service.
‘Over 50 years, we have established ourselves as experts in various fields of Insurance and, due to our experience, we know what our clients need and have come to expect. We have therefore tailored our policies to not only meet the needs of our clients but also exceed them and give them cover that we, as Insurance professionals would be happy with if we were insuring our own homes.
‘Parksure specialises in park home, holiday lodge and static caravan insurance but our parent company Cass-Stephens is also a family run independent broker which deals with all types of Insurance; please visit them at www.Cass-Stephens.co.uk or contact them on 01452 300888
‘There has never been a better time to ring us! So, go on, call Parksure today to see what we can do for you. Call us on Freephone number above, or email us.
Caravanwise Limited, 100 Ringwood Road, Walkford, Christchurch BH23 5RF
T: 0800 3282084
Parkwise is a trading identity of Caravanwise Limited. The company was established in 1998 to arrange insurance cover for Touring Caravans and Static Holiday Caravans. The company explains, ‘Since that time we have widened our portfolio of insurance products to include Motorhomes and Park Homes. Our focus on a small range of insurance products means that we really understand your needs and endeavour to provide you with a friendly and efficient service.
‘We have worked with ABC Insurance to design this policy to provide good level of general buildings and contents cover for owners of park homes. We have focused on the things that are important to you, your home, your contents, your prized possessions and your lovely garden.
Our cover includes: £500,000 new for old, buildings cover as standard; choose contents cover level to suit your home; accidental damage cover included as standard; the option to cover your possessions when they are away from your home; a discount for owner and resident association members; free 24 hour domestic emergency help line.’
ABC Insurance is part of the Liverpool Victoria group of companies. Founded in 1843 Liverpool Victoria (which also trades as LV=) is the UK’s largest friendly society and a major provider of insurance and financial services products. As a friendly society and mutual, Liverpool Victoria exists wholly for the benefit of its members. It has no shareholders taking a share of its profits. Instead it invests its profits in making its products competitive and delivering an outstanding customer service.
‘At Parkwise we offer a free, 24 hour domestic emergency help line to all Park Home policy holders. Accidental damage cover is included as standard and we offer levels of cover for things like garden contents, freezer contents and loss of keys that stand comparison with the other top providers in this market. We also arrange touring caravan, static caravan and motorhome insurance. These policies are very competitively priced and we offer discounts for club, including resident association, members.’
Paul Baker Insurance
16 Hewlett Road, Cheltenham, GL52 6AA
T: Freephone 0800 0385 092
Paul Baker Insurance Services (PBIS) is a traditional insurance broker offering specialist advice, guidance and insurance for park home and leisure home owners. The core values of the business are to offer friendly help, guidance and advice to park and leisure home owners, a choice of policies designed to meet their cover requirements and budget, and, crucially, to provide a dedicated in house personal service from quotation to policy issue, renewal to claim, with a promise of no call centres, no answer machines, no engaged tones and no pressure selling.
Paul has an unrivalled experience and knowledge of the park home insurance sector built up over 30 years. During that time and since he has earned a reputation for supporting the park home community, working with resident’s groups like IPHAS and pioneering the highly successful park home road shows. He co-produces the popular Park Home News magazine, introduced the ‘Resident of the Year’ and ‘Park Manager of the Year’ awards, initiated the Community Sponsorship awards and PBIS is the sponsor of the Park HELP Line set up by leading park home campaigner Sonia McCall.
He is passionate about what he does and passionate about promoting excellence within the industry and supporting the park home community. The business is packed with experienced, friendly and personable staff. This wealth of experience combined with a choice of high quality policies underwritten by AXA Insurance make PBIS an excellent choice if you are looking for park home and leisure home insurance.
The company prides itself in offering unrivalled experience within the park home insurance sector, as well as expert knowledge of park homes, the lifestyle, the legislation. It also offers a choice of policies, plus a choice of how you deal with it, either by phone or face-to-face in your home or its office
The company also boast exceptional policy cover – the Select policy boasts NO excesses, includes accidental damage, a 24 hour Home Emergency Assistance Service with up to £1000 per call out and unlimited new for old cover with reassuringly high sums insured.
In addition, the company offers in-house claims handling and boasts friendly smiley staff who love to chat – and NO hard selling. There’s also a 15% discount to members of park home resident’s associations
The company is first and foremost a specialist park home and leisure home insurance broker but does have access to a wide range of other insurance products including standard house and contents insurance, let property, touring caravans and motorhomes.
Whilst price is important, the emphasis is always on providing a top quality friendly and warm customer experience, quality products, an expert and understanding claims handling service and a commitment to supporting the park home community.
1 Barnfield Crescent, Exeter EX1 1QY
T: 0844 846 8298
Shield Total Insurance
Juniper House, Warley Business Park, The Drive, Brentwood CM13 3BE
T: 0800 393 966
Ellenborough House, Wellington Street, Cheltenham. GL50 1XZ
T: 0344 892 1412
Towergate Insurance is one of the leading providers of park home insurance, and with over 40 years of experience they fully understand the park home lifestyle and the requirements of park home owners. They offer a choice of policies which have been designed based upon their knowledge and experience within the park home industry. This includes a 24 hour Homecare Emergency Assistance Service and a Legal Advice helpline manned by experts in park home legislation.
Towergate also offer travel insurance for over 65’s and those with pre-existing medical conditions.
Let’s hope you never need to claim on your home insurance policy, because no one wants to have problems with their park home or holiday home. However, if you do need to make a claim, your insurance company will probably state that any work needs to be carried out by an insurance-registered company. Many of the home renovation and repair specialists are registered for insurance work and it’s a good thing to look for, even if you aren’t having work done under an insurance claim, as it is normally a sign of good quality workmanship.
Here’s just a sample list of high quality home renovation/repair companies that may be able to carry out work for your insurance company.
You may just need to check first that your particular insurance company recognises the renovation company you decide to use.
List of renovation companies:
CNC Park Home Services (T: 0800 334 5566, W: www.cncparkhomeservices.com);
PCS Park Home Refurbishment Specialists (T: 01202 267 600; W: www.pcs-parkhomes.co.uk);
Prestige Developments (T 01933 443607, W: www.prestigedevelopments.com);
Blue Chip Park Homes (T: 01327 844686, W: www.bluechipparkhomes.co.uk);
Calladine Ltd (T: 01636 858467; W: www.calladineltd.com);
Eco Systems Park Homes (T: 01279 271184; W: www.ecosystemsparkhomes.co.uk);
Goldcrest Park Home Refurbishments (T: 01476 848 652, W: www.goldcrestparkhomes.co.uk);
Insulated Homes (T: 01647 24599, W: www.insulatedhomes.net);
Imperial Park Homes Limited (T: 0800 7814576; W: www.imperialparkhomes.co.uk);
MPH Park Homes Ltd (T: 0800 191 0711; W: www.mphparkhomesltd.co.uk);
Nuvex Park Home Refurbishment (T: 01933 778849; W: www.nuvexltd.co.uk);
Park Home Insulations (T: 0800 313 4559, W: www.parkhomeinsulations.co.uk);
Park Home Services Complete Specialists (T: 0800 0029 369; W: www.pscs-ltd.co.uk);
Red Rose Park Home Services (T: 01524 68438 / 07769 948199; W: www.redroseservices.co.uk);
S H Caravans (T: 01206 213181, W: www.shcaravans.com);
Superior Home Developments (T: 0800 066 3862, W: www.park-home-refurbishments.co.uk).