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Understanding Indemnity Insurance

Jul 04, 2024

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Indemnity insurance plays a crucial role in property transactions, offering protection against potential financial losses arising from specific issues related to the property. Here’s a comprehensive guide to understanding indemnity insurance, its purposes, costs, and common types relevant to buyers and sellers.

What is Indemnity Insurance?

Indemnity insurance is a specialized type of insurance used in property transactions to safeguard both buyers and sellers from financial risks associated with certain property issues. These issues, if left unresolved, could potentially jeopardize the sale or lead to legal disputes in the future.

Why Do Solicitors Recommend Indemnity Insurance?

During the conveyancing process, solicitors may advise their clients to obtain indemnity insurance when there’s a concern about a property defect or legal compliance issue. This precautionary measure helps mitigate risks that could affect the transaction's completion. For example, missing planning permissions or building regulation certificates are common triggers for indemnity insurance requests.

What Does Indemnity Insurance Cover?

Indemnity insurance does not cover the cost of fixing a property defect itself, such as replacing a boiler or upgrading windows. Instead, it provides financial protection against any legal costs or claims that may arise due to the uncovered issue after the property sale has completed.

How Much Does Indemnity Insurance Cost?

The cost of indemnity insurance varies depending on the type and extent of coverage needed. Typically, premiums are paid as a one-time payment and can range from several hundred pounds upwards, depending on the perceived risk and the financial limit of coverage required.

Who Pays for Indemnity Insurance?

In most cases, it is the seller who pays for indemnity insurance. This is because the policy relates to potential issues or defects within their property that could affect the sale process or property value if not adequately addressed.

Common Types of Indemnity Insurance

  • Restrictive Covenant Insurance: Covers breaches of restrictive covenants, which are legal restrictions on property use specified in the property deeds.
  • Planning Permission Insurance: Protects against issues arising from alterations made without proper planning permissions or building regulation compliance.
  • Boiler Installation Indemnity: Ensures coverage if the installation certificate for a boiler cannot be located, providing protection against safety claims.
  • Window FENSA Certificate: Covers properties where the FENSA certificate for window installations cannot be found, protecting against enforcement actions.
  • Chancel Repairs: Provides coverage for potential liability to contribute to church chancel repairs, a legal obligation in some properties.
  • Absence of Easement: Covers loss of property value due to lack of legal rights (easements) for access or utilities.
  • Insolvency Cover: Protects against financial risks if funds from a third party (e.g., for deposit assistance) become subject to creditor claims.


Indemnity insurance is an essential consideration in property transactions where potential issues could impact the sale or future ownership. Understanding the types of risks covered and the role it plays in mitigating these risks is crucial for both buyers and sellers. If your solicitor recommends indemnity insurance during your property purchase, it’s important to weigh the advice and understand the protection it provides.

Stay informed about indemnity insurance and other aspects of property transactions to make informed decisions. Register for property alerts by Howards to stay updated on new listings and opportunities in your area, ensuring you’re ready to navigate the property market with confidence.

By understanding indemnity insurance and its role, you can protect your interests and ensure a smoother property transaction process.