In the event of a claim – the insurance underwriter dealing with your claim will go back to your application and policy to ensure that you have the correct policy for the property, and make sure that the event for which you are claiming is covered on the contract. If you live in a Coach House and have insured your property as something different (usually a flat) – it is likely your claim would be declined.
As a freeholder/leaseholder of garages beneath your property – there are specific legal liabilities which must be taken into account by your policy provider, and requires a bespoke and specialised policy. It is essential this is all discussed at the application/quote stage of your Buildings and Contents Insurance research.
The risk to the insurer of providing a policy for a Coach House comes down to the fact that your neighbour (leaseholder) could indeed cause damage to the building for which you are the freeholder. In this event you would have to claim on your home insurance policy and pay the excess. Any claims made on Home Insurance policies will affect the policy holders personal insurance history/reputation. Claims made on Home Insurance policies have to be declared for 5 years and could affect the insurance premiums paid by the policy holder in future years. There is lots of opportunity for dispute between freeholders and leaseholders and here lies the risk to the insurer.
As with any Insurance Policy – it is essential that all material facts are disclosed up front prior to any policy going enforce – therefore it is best practise, best advise and essential that if you own a Coach House – you describe the freehold/leasehold arrangements of the garages/carports and driveway space accurately at the quotation stage of your research and negotiations with insurers.
It is possible that all the garages/carports are yours and there are no leases involved – again, providing you disclose and describe your Coach House accurately your property will be correctly insured, and you will not be taking any risks.
As with any insurance – it is essential you read your quotation and policy Key Features thoroughly, and ask all of your questions before you proceed – ensuring that the policy includes everything you need it to include, expect it to include and meets your needs perfectly. It is the policy holders responsibility to do this – and makes perfect sense as it is the policy holder who could find themselves uninsured and out of pocket in the event of a claim.