The older a building it is, the more likely it is to need historic insurance coverage. And the older it is, the more likely it’s not properly insured. With more than 92,000 listed historic properties in the National Register of Historic Places, many properties are going to need adequate protection in the event that they need to be rebuilt or restored.
One thing that you’re going to want to know is how much your historic property is worth; that will determine how much coverage you need and how much you’re going to spend on it. There are things on your property that you might want to fix that are decades old--meaning they’re going to cost money to patch up. Having one of these properties is definitely an investment, and it may take more coverage than your client expects to protect that building.
Will the policy you offer cover their biggest asset? If you're not sure, be sure to compare it with our program.
When owning one of these buildings, it’s likely that you could be underinsured. Here’s some key coverages for historic properties:
Hidden Costs to Deal With
If a historic building is damaged, it requires more work than a regular property. Things you’ll have to handle include:
- Hiring highly skilled craftsmen, from decorative arts to muralists, to stonemasons;
- Hard to match materials, like hand-hewn timbers and vintage brick shapes;
- Extra time to rebuild because of the labor-intensive process of historic renovation;
- Additional professional services to assist in areas like recertification and recovery of tax benefits.
The one policy you’re going to want is a historic property policy. Our policy offers to cover the costs of rebuilding the original building with the same resources as originally used.
A Sample of What’s Covered
When damaged, a historic building may require this out of their historic insurance:
- Historic certification expenses
- Loss of federal, state and local tax benefits
- Increased building assessments
- Green energy building upgrades where possible
- Increased time to restore the property due to operation of landmark and other building laws
- Increased cost of instruction due to land ordinances
Do You Need Certification?
All currently certified buildings are eligible for coverage, as well as buildings that could be certified or are located in a historic district. Basically any building that meets the historic criteria can actually be covered by this policy, whether they are certified or not. These are just some of the key things to look for in coverage for a historic property.