Thatch Insurance

Basic Thatch Insurance Frequently Asked Questions

Thatched properties come with special challenges. Here’s our thatched cottage insurance FAQ, designed to answer the most commonly asked thatch insurance questions.

If your question isn’t answered here, feel free to contact us for a no-obligation discussion about insuring your beautiful thatched home.

Q: How is thatched cottage insurance different from ordinary home insurance?

A: Specialist thatch property cover protects you against all the usual risks covered under home and contents insurance, with a focus on the slightly different risks the roofing material presents. The cover isn’t different per se, but the underwriting that sits behind it is specially tailored to reflect the risk presented by thatch properties.

Q: Does specialist thatch cover cost more?

A: Yes – there’s no getting away from it, insuring your thatched property may cost around a third more than a modern tiled house. The premium is affected chiefly by how you heat the house – woodburners and multifuel stoves can add to the cost simply because they involve flames, where radiators and other standard types of central heating don’t.

Q: Do thatched houses often catch fire?

A: Fire is not a regular occurrence in thatched properties. But it’s a risk you ignore at your peril, and ordinary home insurance doesn’t cover it. Of the estimated 50,000 thatched buildings in Britain, Fire Service statistics reveal 60-70 per year will suffer some form of fire damage, 85{fcb871d8a172bdb5e6d9fafd8c8457933956cb61c42680abaa1188974828c2e1} through burning wood or fossil fuels. You need to bear in mind you have a combustible roof and take advice from the experts – like us!

Q: What is the best way to avoid thatched roof fires?

A: A combination of good housekeeping, regular maintenance and constant vigilance are your best weapons to cut the risk of a thatch fire. As a rule modern electricity, gas and sustainable heating systems present less fire risk than an open hearth or wood burning/multifuel stove. We’ve even written a blog post about fire prevention for thatched homes. (link to a blog post on the subject, one of our first three posts since it’s such an important subject)

Q: Why have my insurers asked for a "Periodic Inspection Report" for the electrics?

A: It’s an underwriting thing. Next to burning solid fuel, electrical problems are the biggest cause of fire in thatch. A Periodic Inspection Report carried out by a qualified (NICEIC) electrician should identify problems with wiring or installations that could cause damage or injury. Certificates will be either “satisfactory” (problems – if any – of a minor nature) or “unsatisfactory” meaning that problems will have to be addressed. Those found will be coded C1 (potentially dangerous) through to C3 (needs improvement to comply). The gap between re-inspection is usually 5-10 years depending on the electrician’s findings.

Q: Is thatch expensive to replace?

A: Yes, if you are starting from scratch compared to tiling in, say, concrete tiles, but not outrageously so. Thatch will need more regular maintenance than a conventional roof and will not, of course, last as long. A well thatched water reed roof will last the longest, followed by combed wheat (aka Devon wheat reed) and, lastly, longstraw. Good, well thatched Longstraw should last 20 years. The ridges on all types of thatch will need replacing every 5 years or so.

Q: Where can I read Keyfacts and Policy Documents?

A: We have those available for download for you to have a look over, Click here!

Should you have any questions about any of it please get in touch with the Thatchline staff.

Avoid delays, underwriting issues, unfair ‘special conditions’ , excesses and policy endorsements.

Specially designed affordable thatch insurance plus invaluable help, advice and support for the owners of thatched homes.

Recent Client Testimonials

People say some really nice things about our thatched home insurance services. Here are just a few of their comments.

Here are just a few of their comments.

I cannot thank you enough for the quick, efficient response you supplied when I was hit by the flood following the blocked drain. It could not have been at a worst time in my life, but with your wonderful help I have got over the problem. 

Thank you for making the insurance of our new home so straightforward – so in contrast with the other professionals with whom we had to deal!

People who understand old houses and are sympathetic with the problems that we owners encounter, and come up with solutions rather than “the computer says……”

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