What checks do you need to carry out on a new property?

By Blog

When purchasing a new property, there are many things you need to consider. Forgetting to carry out necessary steps before you decide to buy a house and continue with moving in could cause you problems in the future. For example, undiagnosed issues with the house could run you up an expensive bill or affect the value of the property.

Here is some advice to guide you through the property buying process and the things you need to check with regards to a new property.

  • Checking the electrics
  • Check the gas
  • Water and drainage search
  • Spot signs of damp
  • Look for rot
  • Age of roof
  • Consider the plumbing


Checking the electrics

Making sure the electrics are in good condition is vitally important. A survey on your house will not look at the state of these so it is well worth getting an Electrical Installation Condition report. This report will carry out the necessary checks to make sure the electrics in your property are safe. An electrics report could help you save thousands of pounds, as rewiring can be expensive.

Check the gas

When buying a new property, get a gas safety record (also known as a gas safety certificate) for your new home. Asking the current owners for this record on all appliances in the property is vitally important for your safety.

Appliances that are unsafe to use could lead to carbon monoxide poisoning, fires, gas leaks, and even explosions. Do not make the assumption that all gas appliances in your new house will be safe to use – always check.

If it has been over 12 months since the last gas safety record has been done, or the current owners are unable to provide a record, obtain one yourself. Contact a Gas Safe registered engineer prior to you moving in.


Water and draining search

Do not overlook the importance of checking water and sewage before buying a house. This is important, as it means you will not encounter unforeseen difficulties after you have purchased the property.

A Drainage and Water Search is typically carried out as part of the conveyancing process. Your conveyancing solicitor will contact the water company supplier for your home to check for things such as:

  • Whether there is a water meter
  • Where does the water supply come from
  • Are there sewers or water mains at the house
  • Are there any problems with water pressure
  • Who is responsible for drainage at the property

Does it have subsidence?

Subsidence can have a huge impact on a property’s structural safety as well as its overall value. Therefore, making sure it is detected before buying is key.

Subsidence is when the ground underneath your property sinks, over time this may cause your property’s foundations to become misaligned.

Signs of subsidence in your property include:

A crack in a property caused by subsidence will usually:

  • Have a width larger than 3mm
  • Be located close to a door or window
  • A diagonal crack wider at the top than at the bottom
  • Visibility is both on the inside and outside of the property

If you want to purchase a house that you suspected has subsidence issues, get a full buildings survey carried out.


Spot signs of damp

Damp can cause significant damage to your home, can be costly to fix and can also trigger health problems such as respiratory issues or allergic reactions.




As a result, checking for damp before buying a new property is well worth doing. Here are some ways you can spot the signs of damp:

  • Damp patches on walls and plastering
  • Water streaming down windows
  • Peeling wallpaper
  • Damaged plaster
  • Damaged skirting boards
  • Springy floorboards
  • Wall discolouration


Look for rot

Rot is caused when the timber has been exposed to wet conditions, and this can lead to a number of property problems. It is highly recommended you check for rot in the home-buying process. The signs of wet rot include the following:

  • Springy or bouncy floors – rot can affect floor joists or floorboards
  • Darkened timber – discoloration is caused by wet rot
  • Damp smell – rot can be a leading cause of this
  • Flaking paint or peeling wallpaper
  • Fungal growth – this is usually white, black or yellow in colour
  • Crack timber – usually linear
  • Spongy timber – when pressed


What is the age of the roof?

Checking how old the roof is on a property you want to purchase is another thing to consider. Replacing roofs can be costly, and newer roofs typically only last for 15-20 years in total.


Consider the plumbing

When viewing a property, ask if the pipes are lead and run the taps to see what the water pressure is like. You should also check if the boiler and radiators work in the building and how old these are.


What does base rate cut mean for the UK property market?

By Blog

The Bank of England (BoE) has just announced a base rate cut of 0.5 percent following the outbreak of Coronavirus across Europe.  This represents the biggest cut since the financial crisis back in 2008. This emergency interest cut from 0.75 percent to 0.25 percent has been done by BoE to ease a possible recession and an overall slowdown in the economy if coronavirus spreads further into the UK.

What will be the expected impact for the property market following this base rate cut? Here is what is anticipated to happen.

  • Better mortgage rates
  • Will not apply to fixed-rate mortgages
  • Good news for landlords
  • Those applying for a mortgage will benefit
  • Positive news for property investors

Better mortgage rates

A historically low base rate will likely mean good news for those with mortgages. This is because a reduced base rate will likely then make interest rates on standard variable rate and tracker mortgages lower. This is down to the fact that the base rate is the interest charged by the BoE to borrow money, which is then reflected in the interest rates people in the UK pay.

The total amount that can be saved for a tracker mortgage will be dependent on if your mortgage is interest-only or not.

Unlikely to apply for fixed-rate mortgages

Unfortunately, if you have a fixed-rate mortgage (approximately 92.4% of all approved mortgages were fixed-rate in the final quarter of 2019) then the rate cut will not be passed on. This is because this mortgage term applies for between two and five years.

The only way you could potentially benefit is if you decided to remortgage your property. Think carefully if it is worth doing so, taking into account things such as cancellation fees.


Good news for buy-to-let mortgages

The base rate cut is good news for landlords, as almost all of the buy-to-let mortgages are provided on an interest-only basis. That means if interest-rates are reduced, it can only be advantageous for those with buy-to-lets.


Those looking to get a mortgage will benefit

If you are currently in the process of looking to buy a property and require a mortgage, now is the time to take advantage of mortgages being at historically low levels.

For example, the current base rate means this is a great opportunity to benefit from a low fixed-rate deal. A fixed-rate deal will mean that you can lock in a deal and if the base rate increases later on, you will not be impacted for the duration of the term.


Positive for property investors

Reduced interest rates are also better for property investors, as it helps to reduce the cost of borrowing for property development finance. It also increases the opportunity to boost profits in the longer term, thanks to the lower rate of interest.


Gazumping – what you need to know about it

By Blog

If you are buying a property, or about to go through the process of doing so, you have likely heard of the term gazumping. But what exactly does it mean? If you are a buyer, making sure that you know what gazumping is key, so you are aware of the ways it may set you back, as well as what you can do to avoid it.

What is gazumping?

The act of gazumping is when another buyer puts in a higher offer on the property you are currently in the process of buying and the seller accepts this last-minute offer instead.

For anyone who has gone through the experience of having their offer accepted by a seller, only to have it suddenly rejected due to another buyer’s higher offer, can attest it is a difficult situation to be in.


What happens if I am gazumped?

For the majority of buyers who find themselves being gazumped by another buyer offer, there are really only two options.

The first is to make a higher offer than the other buyer who has gazumped you. This may mean having to pay a significant amount more, which may be out of your property budget.

The alternative, and for many there is no other choice, but to start all over again and carry out a new property search.

Is gazumping illegal?

No, as unpleasant as it is for buyers to go through, it is not illegal under English law. The property agreement only becomes legally binding once contracts have been exchanged, meaning that gazumping is effectively exempt.

You can see on a variety of property listings online are listed as ‘Sold STC’ meaning an offer has been received and accepted, but the sale is ‘subject to contracts’ meaning contracts have not come into exchange yet.

What are the consequences of gazumping?

Apart from the main consequence – losing the property you were buying-  other negatives include the high costs accumulated, as gazumping usually occurs later on in the property process. Buyers have usually already spent a considerable amount on surveys and paying a conveyancer, as well as arranging a mortgage.

When can gazumping happen?

Unfortunately, gazumping can take place at any time prior to contracts being exchanged between two parties.

The main reason gazumping occurs is, as previously mentioned, is because another buyer has made a higher bid than you. However, in a small number of cases, the reason could be down to timing issues. For example, if the property buying process is going too slowly (such as the conveyancing survey taking too long to complete) then the seller may choose another buyer who can move at a quicker rate.


How to avoid being gazumped

Here are the main ways you can reduce the risk of being gazumped:

  • Get the property taken off the market
  • Take out specialist insurance
  • Buy at auction
  • Move things quickly


Get the property taken off the market

When your offer is accepted by the seller, make sure you ask the seller to remove the property off the market. Ensure this been done in writing as otherwise, it will not be legally binding.

The same applies to estate agents listing the property. Ask them to remove signs from outside the house as well as removing the listing online.


Take out specialist insurance

If a seller decides to pick a last-minute higher offer from someone else and you do not want to outbid them, there is little you can do other than insure yourself. You can purchase home buyer protection insurance so that you can rest assured you can claim back things such as property surveys or conveyancing fees if need be.


Buy at auction

If you want to avoid the problem of gazumping outright, then consider buying a property at auction. However, make sure you are fully aware of how the process works, as it also comes with its own set of risks too.


Move things quickly

To reduce the risk of gazumping, it is in your best interest to make sure the process is moving as speedily as possible. What do we mean by this? Things such as making sure you are in very regular contact with your mortgage broker and conveyancing solicitors, as well as always responding quickly to information requests. You should also ensure forms are signed and returned promptly too.


How has the property market improved in 2020 after the Brexit result?

By Blog

It is good news all round for the property market, ever since the UK general election outcome in December 2019 and since the country began its year-long transition phase in January 2020 out of the EU.

House prices rising rapidly

According to the recently published Nationwide index, house prices have been rising at a dramatic rate. In fact, they have been rising at the fastest annual rate in 18 months. For example, the average property increased in value by around £200 in February 2020. That means the average home is estimated to be worth £216,092, with inflation for house prices reaching 2.3 percent.


House prices rising in every region of the UK

In even better news, data compiled by the Land Registry has shown that house prices have risen in every region in the UK since the election result in December 2019. This is the first time it has happened in the last two years.

Data from the Land Registry shows that house prices increased by 2.2% in December, which is a rise from 1.7% in the previous month.

December 2019 was the very first month where prices increased in every single region and counties since February 2018.


Mortgage approvals are soaring

Not only are house prices in the UK on the up, but mortgage approvals too. This will be music to the ears of prospective buyers, with levels rising to the highest since before the Brexit referendum took place in 2016.

The latest figures, which are a part of the most recent money and credit report created by the Bank of England, show that approvals are at the highest since February 2016.

Approximately 71,000 mortgage applications were approved in January 2020, far exceeding recent forecasts made by property experts. The numbers are also four percent higher than in December 2019. In the last month of 2019, mortgage approvals were at 67,000.


Remortgage approvals rising in 2020

There has been a spike in the number of confirmed remortgages too in January 2020. Remortgage approvals in the UK are now up by 3.9 percent, with over 52,1000 deals approved in the first month of the year.


Why is the property market booming?

Property development experts believe that the landslide election outcome in December 2019 leading to a confirmed Brexit in January 2020 has helped to result in a more stable economic outlook. This has had a huge impact on buyers’ and sellers attitudes to the UK property market.

However, experts have also highlighted that if the coronavirus outbreak continues to spread in the UK, property prices could fall in the coming months.




How is coronavirus affecting the property market?

By Blog

Coronavirus has had a huge impact on the global economy, with share prices dramatically dropping at the same rate as the 2008 financial crisis and China’s economy is already suffering considerably. However, has the property market in the UK been affected so far? Only mildly.

Minor dips in the housebuilding market

So far coronavirus has only mildly impacted the property development finance market in the UK, with a small decrease in share prices. Housebuilding firms such as Berkeley and Vistry have seen their shares flatline and Crest Nicholson was down by 0.57%. However, the impact of the virus on house prices in the next coming months is not yet known.

A strong February for house prices

February was a good month for house prices, with the average price of a house increasing 2.8 percent compared to the same time last year. According to the recently published Halifax House Price Index, prices were increasing by 2.9 per cent per quarter, meaning that the average price of a property in the UK is now around £240,677.

There has been a stable level of both buyer and seller activity in recent months, far better than has been seen in recent years. Property experts strongly believe that this is because the jobs market is strong, borrowing rates are almost at a record low and the end of uncertainty regarding Brexit. Average house prices in the UK rose considerably in February alone. Many have seen that as a welcome return to a healthy property market. But, this may be at risk now due to the spread worldwide of coronavirus taking place at a rapid rate in the last few weeks.


Coronavirus could threaten UK house prices

Experts believe that if the coronavirus spreads more prominently to the UK, this could pose a significant blow to the housing market.

This is partly based on the fact that political uncertainty in the last two years had a huge impact on prices and the virus could have the same effect in causing falling price growth and transactions.

For example, new builds abroad have already stopped, with new travel restrictions in place meaning that it is more difficult for developers to attract interest from foreign investors.

In the long-term, this could be harmful to foreign investment if such restrictions are in force for a considerable period of time. It will also likely have a knock-on effect on house prices.


House buyers and sellers could put plans on hold

In a survey carried out recently by Benham and Reeves, their data revealed that 17 percent have already put plans on hold for buying or selling property due to the coronavirus.

If fears become more widespread, then market activity may fall once again despite an otherwise strong start to the year.


How is a private road different to a public road?

By Blog

As a property development finance company, we are commonly asked about the main differences between private and public roads. In this guide, we clarify the most frequently asked questions on private and public roads.

What are private streets?

Private streets (also known as unadopted streets) can be classified as roads that are not being maintained at public expense.

What this means is, is that council tax is not used in order to fund neighborhood expenses such as rubbish collections, road maintenance etc. That means councils are not legally required to carry out repair work on private streets should they arise.

This remains the case even if the public has a right of access to this private road.

If repair work is urgently required in order to make sure the street is safe, then the council may ask the residents on this private road to carry them out.


Do I receive lower council tax if I live on a private street?

No, the council will not provide you with a council tax reduction because you live in a building that is on a private street. It is worth remembering that council tax is paid to help with all the public services provided, not just for maintaining streets.


Can a private street be adopted by the local authority?

Yes, it is possible for private street ownership to be taken over by the local relevant authority, providing that they meet certain criteria.

For example, the private street in question will need to have met the local council’s adoption standard. These requirements can vary from authority to authority, but may include things such as improving lighting or curbs in the area.


How to find out if a road is public or private

If you want to find out whether a road is private or public, you can check this with the highway authority for the area in the UK. In most cases, this will be the local council.

The authority in question is required to keep a statutory list, available online, of all the highways that are being maintained at the public’s expense.

This means that if you see a road on this list, it will be a public road. If the road is not listed, it is almost guaranteed it will be a privately owned road, even if there is a public right of way so pedestrians can access it.


Is there a difference between a private road and a private street?

There is not a legal differentiation between the two, it is simply up to the local authority and others to determine which to use.


What are the advantages of private roads?

A private road can have a number of benefits. For example, this may be any of the following:

  • Less traffic and noise
  • A greater sense of community
  • More control over the surrounding area


Are there disadvantages to having private roads?

There are some potential pitfalls to private roads that it is important to be aware of.

For example, it is the responsibility of the owners of the property on that part of the street to maintain them if it needs repairing. If the residents on a private street disagree on the cost, it can cause problems.

Another potential issue can be if the street is not completely maintained. The private road could end up falling into disrepair and may cause safety problems.

Insurance costs also need to be considered, as if accidents occur on a private road the cost of a claim could be very high.


Should you add solar panels to a property?

By Blog, Development Finance

Yes, adding solar panels to a property can be a worthwhile investment and should be considered when you are thinking about property development finance costs.

Adding solar panels is becoming increasingly popular amongst property developers, as more and more buyers become concerned and aware of their environmental impact, and want to find ways of reducing their carbon footprint.

With all this in mind, we take a closer look at the advantages of having solar panels, and the main aspects you need to know about them before making a final decision.


How much do solar panels cost?

On average, solar panel installation will cost you anywhere between £5,000 and £8,000 in total.


How long do solar panels last for?

If you decide to install a solar PV system, you can expect it to last 25 years. It is very important to keep in mind that solar panels are a long-term investment.


The popularity of solar panels

Having solar panels installed can help to increase the property’s overall saleability.

For example, an independent study that was carried out by ING Direct showed that almost half of all prospective buyers stated they were the thing they most desired in a home.

As a result, by tapping into the growing popularity of solar panels you can increase the likelihood of your property selling, as it will be more attractive to potential buyers. It can also help to make your property stand out, and could well be the thing that encourages a buyer to make that final offer.


Energy savings = increased saleability

Solar panels also help when it comes to energy efficiency. With more prospective buyers looking to reduce their energy bills, it means that solar panels are helping to increase property’s saleability in this way too.

In a report carried out by the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) that looked at the impact of energy efficiency and its influence on property valuations in the UK, this was confirmed. The DECC report shows that properties that had energy-saving measures helped boost house prices by a whopping 14% in total.

On average, this meant a property price boost of £16,000.  Therefore, not only are solar panels are a long-term investment, but they are a cost-effective one too, compared to the initial cost of installing them.


Reduced carbon footprint

Not only can solar panels be a worthwhile property price investment, but they also help reduce carbon footprint.


Check the property is suitable for installation

Whilst there a number of advantages to having solar panels, it is extremely important you have made sure that the property is suitable in the first place. This is because not all houses will be suitable for a solar PV installation.

The main things to consider when it comes to installing a solar PV system are:

  • You will mostly need a south-facing roof that has no shade or at least very little
  • The tilt of the roof angle will also be important, affecting how much overall energy that is produced, as well as the money you spend
  • Size of the solar PV system (the size you choose will depend on the roof and electricity used)
  • The FIT rate you can get (remember that these rates reduce every quarter)
  • Where in the country the property is located (for example, a house in south west England will get more sunlight than a house in Northern England)




What is involved in a property survey?

By Blog, Development Finance

Property surveys form an important part of the property development finance process. We take a closer look at what you need to know.

What is a property survey?

This is an inspection of the property’s overall condition, which is assessed by an expert surveyor who visits the building and prepares a property report based on their findings.

The surveyor is able to determine if there are any problems with a property that are a cause for concern for the prospective buyer.


What does a surveyor look for?

The property surveyor will be able to check if there any structural problems with the building, such as subsidence issues or unstable walls. They can also check to see if major alterations or repairs are needed to be carried out (such as fixing the roof) before it can be used.


When is a property survey carried out?

In most cases, once the homebuyers’ offer has been approved by the seller, the property is assessed by a surveyor.

Types of property surveyors

When getting a property survey, you should make sure that the surveyor you have chosen is accredited by one of the following bodies:

  • SAVA or RSPA – the Residential Property Surveyors Association
  • RICS – the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors

It is worth remembering that surveyors from these accrediting bodies offer different types of surveys. For example, RICS surveyors provide three ‘levels’ of a property survey, involving a Condition Report, Homebuyer Report, and a Building Survey.


Is a property survey the same as a mortgage valuation?

No, a mortgage valuation is simply a brief assessment of a property to see how much it is roughly valued to be. This valuation is a requirement for most mortgage lenders in order to justify the loan amount.

A mortgage valuation is definitely not as comprehensive (nor can it replace) as a house survey.


What is the cost of a property survey?

The cost of a property survey is upwards from £300. The amount paid will be largely dependent on the type of survey you choose. We will go into further details as to the types of property surveys there are to choose from in the next section.


What types of property surveys are there?

  • Condition Report (survey level one) – the cheapest and most basic survey available. It provides a summary of property defects and potential risks, as well as ‘traffic light’ indications as to the state of different parts of the building.
  • HomeBuyers Report (survey level two – survey only) – details major problems, non-intrusive survey
  • HomeBuyers Report (survey and valuation), – includes a survey as well as valuation and an insurance reinstatement value as well
  • Home Condition Survey – offered only by RPSA, also provides practical information including damp assessments.
  • Building Survey (survey level three) – by RICS surveyors. The most expensive option, but they are extensive surveys and you are given a report.


What type of property survey should I get?

As already briefly mentioned, there a range of property surveys to choose from. The one you should opt for will depend on the depth of the property survey you are looking for, as well as your overall budget.


How long does a property survey take?

It will depend on the level of survey you have chosen and the size of the building which will be assessed.

On average:

  • A level-one property survey may take up to an hour to complete
  • A level-two property survey make take up to four hours
  • A level-three property survey may take up to a full working day to complete


Do I need to get a survey?

It is highly recommended that you get a property survey before you purchase a property. This enables you to make a fully informed decision about the building and the amount you will be willing to pay for it. Depending on the result of the survey, you can also allow for a budget for repairs that may need doing.

It can also be an excellent way to negotiate the price with the seller, depending on the outcome of the survey.


How to Maximise the Value of a Property

By Blog, Development Finance

There are many things households and developers can do to increase the value of their property, from small redecorating jobs to loft conversions and kitchen extensions. Whilst bigger projects will typically add the most value to a property, there are a range of different ways to make the most out your space, regardless of the budget.

Below are a range of different ways to maximise the value of a property:

  • Creating extra parking spaces
  • Adding insulation
  • Loft conversion or extension
  • Small redecorating jobs
  • Sprucing up the garden

Those listed above can help you make the most out of your property, adding to its appeal and further it value.


Creating Extra Parking Spaces

Creating extra parking spaces could add considerable value to a property. In some areas (like Central London) parking is a sought after feature that many are willing to pay extra for or rent out to the public for events or work days.

If the property is located in the right area and has enough free space, it might be good to consider adding some off-street parking to push up its value.


Adding Insulation

Properly insulating a development can have multiple benefits. Not only can proper insulation cut down the cost of your monthly heating bills, it can also make a property more energy efficient, boosting its EPC rating and subsequently its value. See our guide on how to save money on developing a property.

You can insulate cavity walls, as well as the loft/roof to improve its energy efficiency. Additionally, double glazed windows can help to keep heat in whilst also shutting noise out; adding value in terms of energy efficiency whilst preventing damage to value from noise pollution.


Loft Conversion or Extension

Bigger projects, such as a loft conversion or extension, can add significant value to a property. Adding new spaces can make a property more appealing to buyers and also attract buyers who would not have initially looked at the property.

For example, by turning the loft into another bedroom you open up the property to those wanting more bedrooms/space. Adding extra bedrooms (and rooms in general) also increases the value of a property.



Adding a loft conversion can boost your property’s value by 20%


Extensions to kitchens, dining rooms and more can also greatly add to the value of a property, opening these rooms up and making bigger, more attractive spaces.

A loft conversion will typically increase the property’s value by up to 20% and a new kitchen can add 10% to 15% in additional value. This kind of work will typically require planning permission.


Small Redecorating Jobs

Whilst bigger projects usually add more value to a property, the smaller redecorating jobs can also have a big impact on its overall look and appeal. Having leaky taps, broken lightbulbs and peeling paint whilst seemingly small issues can make a property look run-down and unattractive.

Some of the smaller jobs you can then do to spruce up a property are as follows:

  • Fixing dripping taps.
  • Cleaning dirty walls.
  • Removing built up limescale in the bathroom and kitchen.
  • Replacing broken lightbulbs.
  • Repainting walls.

Although some of these features may not seem like much, collectively they can all help to make a property look more attractive, and potentially add value.


Sprucing Up the Garden

Having a tidy and well-designed garden can do wonders to the value of your property, creating an additional space for people to entertain and relax in. Cutting back any overgrown grass and removing any weeds can help to tidy up the area, whilst adding new plants, outdoor furniture, or even small water features can turn it into a beautiful new space in the property.


What insurance do you need when developing a property?

By Blog, Development Finance

It is highly recommended that you have unoccupied buildings insurance in place, and you may also be required to take out a JCT contract (non-negligence insurance) as well as a contractor all-risk policy if developing a property.

As property development finance experts, we will explain these insurance products in further detail in the rest of this guide, to provide you with in-depth information so you can make an informed decision.

Unoccupied buildings insurance

If developing a property that is completely unoccupied, you will need unoccupied buildings insurance. Typically, there will be three levels of cover to choose from. Pick carefully the level of cover to ensure you are fully insured in the event something goes wrong.

  • Level one: this level of cover for unoccupied buildings insurance means that it will only pay out for FLEEA. This stands for Fire, Lightning, Earthquake, Explosion and Aircraft damage only. That means if the property development experiences flood or malicious damage, you will not be able to recuperate costs.
  • Level two: an insurer will cover you for theft, malicious damage, water damage with this insurance policy.
  • Level three: the highest level of unoccupied buildings insurance cover will provide full peril cover should something go wrong during property development.

Make sure you inform your insurer about renovations

When insuring an unoccupied property, inform the insurer when applying that you will be renovating the building. Some insurers will not necessarily make a pay out for major refurbishments if a claim was made or they may decide to implement a cover cap on renovations they would pay out for.

Contractors all risk insurance

If you are the property developer you should also take out contractors all-risk insurance, in order to make sure you are protected against other contractors also working for you.

The main reason for doing this is because you may not necessarily receive adequate cover from the contractors’ insurance policies. In the worst-case scenario, that means you would end up having to pay out for damage caused, out of your own pocket.

By not having this insurance policy in place, you could be putting your property investment at risk.


JCT Insurance  21. 2.1

Also known as Non-Negligence Insurance, it is in place in order to protect the employer (this being the property developer).

This type of insurance will protect the employer against any unforeseen damage to third-party properties, which have resulted due to property development works on your site by a contractor or sub-contractor.

The damage this insurance policy refers to includes things such as lowering of groundwater, vibration, heave or subsidence.

Keep in mind that if you don’t have this insurance policy in place, you could end up having to cover the cost of a claim.