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Building insurance

Gateshead Council owns the building you live in and it is our responsibility to insure the building and common parts. Your share of the cost of the building's insurance is included in your annual service charge. The insurance runs from 1 April to 31 March and the premium is based on the cost of rebuilding the flat. This is called the sum insured which is different from the market value.

The buildings insurance is supplied by Avid Insurance Services Ltd.

Types of damage covered by building insurance

Generally, the policy insures the building against the following:

  • Fire, smoke, explosion, lightning or earthquake
  • Riot, civil commotion, strikes, labour or political disturbances
  • Malicious damage
  • Collision by aircraft, other aerial devices
  • Falling trees, branches. telegraph poles or lampposts
  • Theft or attempted theft
  • Subsidence, ground heave or landslip (an excess of £1,000 applies to each incident or loss)
  • Accidental breakage of fixed glass, fixed water or heating installations, inspection covers, cables and pipes serving the building
  • Sudden blockages to drainage

What buildings insurance does not cover

Buildings insurance does not cover every situation. For example, faults by mechanical breakdown and hidden defects are treated as normal repairs. Other examples of situations not covered include:

  • Wear and tear
  • Loss or damage to contents and personal belongings, for example carpets (if there are any)
  • Routine repairs - repairing pipes or replacing heating boilers or radiators that have worn or broken down (although you can claim for damage to the building caused by the sudden escape of water)
  • Maintenance failures such as rain seeping through worn-out window seals
  • Loss or damage after the home has been unoccupied for more than 30 days

If you sublet your property, we suggest that you or your tenant consider additional landlord/tenant's liability insurance. This will cover accidents in your property that cause damage to any of your neighbours' properties. For example, you may be liable for the cost of repairs if you have a leaking washing machine which damages the flat below yours.

Making a building insurance claim

We will make all claims, directly to the insurers, where we are made aware that the structure of the building or common parts has been damaged by an insured peril (eg storm damage).

All claims made for the building will be shown on your Icon for pdf Repairs and Maintenance Statement [241.28KB]

You are responsible for making all claims for damage inside your property.

If you need to make a claim for your property on the buildings insurance policy, you should:

  • Check the policy booklet to see if the loss or damage is covered and what conditions might apply
  • The policy is exempt from any 'excess' payments (except for subsidence where you pay the first £1,000)
  • Contact the insurer's claims handlers (Questgate) directly on 01204860427. Email
  • Make your claim within 30 days (7 days for malicious persons)
  • Quote policy number: 2018CP000083

Contents insurance

We have worked with Royal & Sun Alliance to design a scheme just for leaseholders. It's a simple and affordable Icon for pdf contents insurance scheme [1.31MB] which covers furniture, belongings and decorations.

If you would like to join the scheme, please complete the Icon for pdf contents insurance application form [1.31MB] and return to Your premium will be added to your yearly service charges and collected via monthly instalments.

Leaseholders who sublet their property are not eligible to join the scheme.

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