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High Wycombe Block Management and The Importance of Insurance

As all property owners know, it is vitally important to make sure you have adequate insurance to protect what is probably your biggest asset.  Here at Alba Management Services our High Wycombe block management clients benefit from comprehensive insurance cover from a range of major insurers for competitive premiums.  Due to the number of properties we manage, our buying power frequently results in savings being achieved for our clients.  Since insurance is often one of the biggest service charge costs this provides a welcome benefit to our customers.  We work closely with specialist insurance brokers BM Property Insurance Services to make sure our clients always receive good cover and best advice for their insurance needs.  In this article we explain the different types of insurance that are relevant to blocks of flats and their importance to freeholders, Residents Management Companies and Right to Manage Companies.

Buildings Insurance

This covers the property owner from the costs of rectifying damage caused by insured events ranging from fire to flood to subsidence.  The majority of claims in blocks of flats relate to water leaks between properties.  Often these types of incidents are unavoidable, but increased vigilance and quick reactions can help to reduce the amount of damage caused and therefore reduce the amount needing to be claimed against the insurance.  Frequent and costly claims are likely to result in higher premiums and reduced choice on renewal.  Alba Management Services ensure regular and thorough maintenance of a property and grounds which can reduce the incidence and severity of claims on the buildings insurance.

It is important to insure a property for the correct sum to avoid over or under insurance, both of which can leave freeholders and Residents Management Companies financially exposed.  Alba Management arrange regular Re-build Valuation Surveys to make sure blocks are insured for the correct sum.

Terrorism Insurance

An essential add on to a standard buildings insurance policy.  Many leaseholders query the need for this type of insurance, however, all standard leases on blocks of flats state the insurance must cover all normal risks, and since the government no longer covers the cost of terrorism incidents, terrorism insurance is a must have for residential blocks of flats.  Mortgage lenders may not offer finance for flats if terrorism insurance is not in place.

Engineering Insurance

This type of policy is most commonly used at properties with passenger lifts.  The insurance will provide an inspection of the lift which is important to comply with the health and safety requirements as well as cover in the event of damage occurring to the lift equipment.

Directors’ and Officers’ Liability Insurance

Residents Management Companies and Right To Manage Companies will have directors who are normally volunteer leaseholders.  In becoming a director, a lessee takes on a high number of responsibilities and potential liabilities.  This type of policy provides essential protection against these liabilities and covers legal defence costs, legal advice, damages and out of court settlements.  Premiums tend to be relatively inexpensive making this another essential type of insurance.

Alba Management doesn’t just offer High Wycombe Block Management. Alba Management Services has been managing blocks, estates and residential properties throughout Buckinghamshire and Berkshire for 10 years.  The managed portfolio consists of new build, conversions and listed properties of varying sizes from four flats to eighty flats. You can find out more about our block management services here.

 

Written by Tom Dawson MIRPM, AssocRICS, Managing Director of Alba Management Services.

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