Simply Business homepage
  • Business insurance

    • Business Insurance FAQs

    Business insurance covers

  • Support
  • Claims
  • Sign In
Call Us0333 0146 683
Our opening hours

Builders insurance

Join over 30,400 builders like you with public liability cover from £3.19 per month*

Get tailored quotes in 7 minutes

Start your quote
  • UK-based expert support, online and on the phone
  • Get covered and all your documents the same day
  • Compare tailored builder insurance from trusted brands

Builders discussing plans

Compare quotes from leading brands

  • Hiscox insurance
  • Axa insurance
  • Zurich insurance
  • AIG insurance
  • Churchill insurance
  • RSA insurance
Liked icon

Rated 4.7/5

Based on 39,742 reviews

Precise icon

Claims paid in 24 hours

For 80% of settled claims

What's on this page

  • Why is insurance important?
  • What does it cover?
  • How much does it cost?
  • How do claims work?
  • FAQs
  • Helpful articles

Why do you need builders insurance?

Builders insurance protects you against the cost of accidents and mistakes at work. While you can’t stop them from happening, you can make sure you’re covered. Whether it’s just you or you have others working with you, it’s protection for your business and your customers.

  • protection from big claims like accidental injury or damage
  • help to keep going when an unexpected event gets in the way
  • it covers what you need from legal costs, to tools, to personal accidents

Start your quote

What does builders insurance cover?

You understand your business best – that’s why we put you in control. Whether you want to cover yourself for accidents on site, legal disputes with clients or the tools you need to run your business, you pick what goes into your policy. Making sure you have the right type and level of business insurance can be the difference between getting a claim paid and having to cover the cost of an expensive accident yourself.

Builders public liability insurance

In case you or your employee injure someone or damage their property.

What’s typically covered by public liability insurance for builders?

  • accidents while working at your premises, or on a commercial or residential building site
  • accidents while building new structures, or altering, converting or extending existing ones
  • accidents that happen because of your work, or faulty materials, equipment or parts

For example:

  • a wall you’re building accidentally falls on a member of the public
  • your employee accidentally puts a ladder through someone’s window

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • if you do work other than building on some standalone jobs – for example, electrical work, plastering, or plumbing

Read more about public liability insurance

Employers’ liability insurance

In case an employee gets sick or injured while working for you.

What’s typically covered by employers’ liability insurance?

  • employee illness or injury caused by working for you
  • medical bills and legal fees due to employee illness or injury
  • some temporary or casual workers may be covered – find out which ones

**Employers’ liability insurance is required by law if you have people working for you. Without it, you could be fined up to £2,500 a day for each employee.**

For example:

  • your bricklayer develops a repetitive strain injury in their shoulder
  • your apprentice gets an electric shock from a faulty power tool

Tools insurance

In case your tools are lost, stolen or damaged.

What’s typically covered by public liability insurance for builders tools insurance?

  • loss, damage or theft of your hand tools, power tools and equipment

For example:

  • a flood at your workshop causes water damage to your Stihl saw
  • you turn your back on site for a minute and your tool box is stolen

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • tools left in your van, hired plant, machinery, stock or contents

Read more about tools insurance

Stock insurance

In case materials you're responsible for, like bricks, are lost, stolen, or damaged.

What’s typically covered by stock insurance?

  • loss, damage or theft of materials like bricks and cement

For example:

  • your bricks are stolen from the site you’re working on

Read more about stock insurance

Business and office equipment insurance

In case things like laptops or office filing cabinets are lost, stolen, or damaged.

What’s typically covered by business and office equipment insurance?

  • loss, damage or theft of things like your work laptop

For example:

  • you take your laptop on site and drop an electric drill on it
  • your work laptop is stolen from your home

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • your tools, materials and machinery

Read more about business and office equipment insurance

Hired-in plant insurance

In case plant machinery, like excavators, you've hired in is lost, stolen, or damaged.

What’s typically covered by hired-in plant insurance?

  • loss, damage or theft of things like excavators, rollers, cement mixers etc. you’ve hired in

For example:

  • a bulldozer you’ve hired is stolen from the site you’re working on
  • you damage a cement mixer you've hired by dropping a saw into it

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • tools and plant machinery you own

Read more about hired-in plant insurance

Own plant insurance

In case plant machinery, like excavators, you own is lost, stolen, or damaged.

What’s typically covered by own plant insurance?

  • loss, damage or theft of things like excavators, rollers, cement mixers etc. you’ve hired in

For example:

  • your bulldozer is stolen from the site you’re working on
  • you damage your cement mixer by dropping a saw into it

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • plant machinery you hire in

Read more about own plant insurance

Contract works insurance

In case your building work in progress is damaged by something like a fire, flood or vandalism.

What’s typically covered by contract works insurance?

  • repair costs for the work you have in progress on a building site or job if it’s damaged or destroyed
  • labour, materials and tools to get the job back to the stage it was at before it was damaged or destroyed
  • damage caused by things like fires, floods, storms, vandalism or theft

For example:

  • a fire partially destroys a house extension you’re in the middle of building
  • high winds rip the roof off a summer house you’re in the middle of putting up in a customer’s garden

What you’ll need additional cover for

  • existing structures already on the site you’re working on

Read more about contract works insurance

Legal expenses insurance

In case you’re faced with legal costs from running your business.

  • legal expenses resulting from your day-to-day business activities, like disputes with employees
  • the cost of legal claims relating to property damage, nuisance or trespass
  • HMRC investigations, and tax and compliance disputes
  • includes a tax advice helpline, a 24/7 confidential legal helpline, and crisis PR support to help you protect your business’s reputation

For example:

  • if an employee is injured at work and brings a case against you
  • if your site is vandalised and you bring a case against the vandals

Read more about legal expenses insurance

Personal accident insurance

In case anyone you’ve covered is accidentally injured, at or outside of work.

What’s typically covered by personal accident insurance?

  • injury or death at work or outside of work, for anyone covered on the policy
  • lost income, medical costs and hospitalisation benefit

For example:

  • you lose a finger while working on site
  • your casual labourer breaks his leg while on a night out

Read more about personal accident insurance

Professional indemnity insurance

In case a client loses money because of your advice, services or designs.

What’s typically covered by builders professional indemnity insurance?

  • legal costs of defending yourself if you give bad advice that causes a client to lose money

For example:

  • you design an extension to a house and it collapses within the first year
  • you advise a customer to use superglue to hold up kitchen cabinets and they fall off the wall

Read more about professional indemnity insurance

This content has been created for general information purposes. Make sure you have the right level of business insurance by checking your policy documentation for details. Read our full Terms and Conditions

How much does builders insurance cost?

Find out how much you’ll pay by comparing prices from a range of trusted insurers. You choose what goes into your policy, so you only pay for what you need.

Prices start from £3.19 per month

Get your quotes in 7 minutes – prices are guaranteed for 30 days.

Get your tailored quotes in 7 minutes

Start your quote

10% of our customers paid up to £38.32 a year for a public liability insurance policy between 1st April 2023 - 30th June 2023. Equivalent to £3.19 per month based on a monthly cost when paying for the policy in one annual payment. Paying monthly is usually more expensive as you'll pay interest. Most customers pay more than this but some pay less.

Example builders insurance quotes, real prices

churchill insurance

£9.27 /month

£72.71 /year

A builder working on residential alterations, conversions and extensions

  • 5+ years experience
  • Sole trader
  • No employees
  • Based in Manchester
  • Public liability


  • Employers' liability

    Not included

  • Tools

    Not included

axa insurance

£75.84 /month

£674.12 /year

A builder working on commercial new builds, alterations, conversions and extensions

  • 5+ years experience
  • Limited company
  • 3 employees
  • Based in Swansea
  • Public liability


  • Employers' liability


  • Tools


How we work out example quotes These examples are real quotes from our online system (created 03/03/2023). They’re based on a range of factors, like employees and location. Your own quote will be based on what you tell us about your business. Prices may go up or down from day to day, so the prices you’re quoted may differ to the ones you see here.

What kind of excess should I expect?

An excess is an amount you pay towards any claim you make on your insurance. For example, if your excess is £250 and you make a claim worth £1000, your payout will be a maximum of £750.

Insurance cover

Lowest excess

Highest excess

Public liability



Employers' liability

No excess

No excess







Business and office equipment



Professional indemnity

No excess


The figures above are for guidance only and any excess applying to your quote may differ. You’ll get a breakdown of the excesses for each quote when you compare with us.

How it works

  • Pick what goes into your policy

    Only pay for what you need

  • Get prices from a range of insurers

    Choose the best fit for you

  • Buy online in minutes

    Get your documents the same day

Start your quote

Simply Business

Direct to


Compare policies from a range of trusted insurers

Buy online or over the phone in minutes

Talk to an expert

Our team of UK-based insurance experts are here to help, Mon 09.00am - 05.30pm, Tues 09.00am - 05.30pm, Weds 09.00am - 05.30pm, Thurs 09.30am - 05.30pm, Fri 09.00am - 05.30pm, Sat 09.00am - 02.00pm

Call our team

0333 043 8527


Contact us on our website whenever suits you


Call our insurance experts during office hours (calls are charged at a local rate)


Find answers to common insurance questions

How do builders insurance claims work?

Unlike price comparison websites, we take the hassle out of claims for you. We know how important it is to get your business back on track quickly – and with a minimum of fuss. That’s why you get access to your dedicated claims team any time, day or night. Call them on 0333 207 0560 or claim online. They’ll do their best to be fair and supportive.

£39 million in claims paid out in 2022

Paying 80% of settled claims within 24 hours in 2022

The figure above is rounded across our range of products. Our claims process may vary for different products and operates on a ‘claim by claim’ basis.

As part of our 18 years of insurance experience, here's how we've helped builders like you

Having builders insurance through Simply Business has saved builders thousands of pounds when the unexpected happened.

Andy saved more than £4,335

Andy (not his real name) was working on a loft conversion for a customer when his ladder fell onto someone else’s car. It damaged the bonnet, roof and windscreen. Luckily Andy’s insurance covered the cost of the repairs.

  • Insurance payout


    Covering the cost of the damage to third party property

  • Andy’s costs


    The excess amount stated in Andy’s policy terms

Chosen by 900,000 small businesses and landlords

We started out as a team of 5 back in 2005. We’ve grown since then with 900,000 customers across 1,500 trades now trusting us to provide their insurance.

  • Compare and buy in minutes

    Documents arrive today

  • Rated 4.7/5

    Based on 39,742 reviews

  • Here to help

    Help from UK-based experts

  • 24/7 claims

    Make a claim any time

Builders insurance FAQ

Whether you’re new to buying business insurance or you’ve been trading for a while, here are the answers to some commonly asked questions about builders business insurance. You can also check out our business insurance FAQs.

  • In some situations you may need more than public liability to cover certain kinds of property damage. Learn about hired-in plant cover and contract works cover.

  • Make sure you cover the total cost of replacing all your tools or you’ll only get a proportion of your claim paid out if something happens to them. Learn about tools cover.

  • Depending on what you use to do your work, you may need other covers.

    You may need more than tools insurance – for example, business equipment insurance if you have a work laptop, plant insurance if you use machinery.

  • Employers’ liability insurance is a legal requirement if you employ people.

    If you have people working for you, including bona fide subcontractors (BFSC), labour-only subcontractors (LOSC), part-timers, or full-time staff, employers’ liability insurance is required by law.

    Read on for our simplified guide to the difference between labour-only subcontractors and bona fide subcontractors.

  • Make sure you're picking the right cover to protect you properly. It’s important to know that if you have another trade or job, you'll need additional cover. For example, do you need to consider roofers insurance or bricklayer insurance?

    If you provide other services, make sure you’re covered.

    Other types of insurance

  • Think about the maximum possible loss your business could face in the event of a claim, and make sure you take legal fees and damages into consideration. You can choose from three levels of coverage – £1 million, £2 million, or up to £5 million.

  • Insurance companies calculate the price of your policy based on a range of factors. The quotes you get to compare will be based on your unique business. The following factors could affect the prices you’re quoted:

    • your claims history
    • how long you’ve been in business in this particular trade
    • if you work in dangerous environments
    • if you work with dangerous materials
    • the value of your tools, equipment or materials
    • the number of covers you want to include in your policy
  • If you have people working for you, employers’ liability insurance is required by law. While you may not be legally required to have other types of insurance, there are some covers builders may want to consider.

    Being covered may be especially important if you want the added mark of trust you get from membership of a trade body or professional accreditation. Some trade bodies may require you to have a certain level of public liability or professional indemnity cover, for example.

  • You can set up your insurance before you begin trading. At this point you don’t need trade licences, but as soon as you begin trading, you’ll need to have any required licences in place.

    Under the terms of your builders insurance policy, you’ll need to comply with all relevant rules and regulations for your insurance – and any claims you make – to be valid. Check which licences apply to your unique business using the government’s licence finder.

    Whether you set up as a sole trader or a limited company, you’ll also need to register with HMRC (and Companies House if you form a limited company).

  • You can choose the payment type that suits your business and cash flow best. Some customers prefer to pay in one go, while others prefer to pay a regular monthly amount, like you do with lots of other bills. Simply Business offer three ways to pay for your policy:

    • one-off credit or debit card payment
    • BACS payment
    • Direct Debit

    If you choose to pay by Direct Debit, our credit provider, Premium Credit, pays Simply Business the full amount for your policy up front. You then repay Premium Credit in 10 monthly instalments.

  • This will depend on whether you have employers’ liability insurance in place. Public liability insurance is designed to protect your business against the consequences of legal action brought by members of the public for injuries or damage to their belongings. But when it comes to your employees causing injury or damage, this protection only activates if you also have employers’ liability insurance.

    If you employ people, you’re required by law to have employers’ liability insurance.

    There’s one exception here. Family businesses that aren’t incorporated as a limited company are not legally required to have employers’ liability insurance. The government defines a “family business” as one where all your employees are closely related to you (as a spouse, civil partner, sibling, child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, step-parent, stepchild or half-sibling). So if you run an unincorporated family business and you choose not to get employers’ liability insurance, it’s important to know that your public liability insurance wouldn’t cover you against damage or injury caused by your team.

We create this content for general information purposes and it should not be taken as advice. Always check policy documentation for details and seek professional advice. Read our full Terms and Conditions

Helpful articles for builders

Stamp Out Tool Theft hero image

78% of tradespeople have had their tools stolen, let’s change that.

Stamp Out Tool Theft

Keep up to date with Simply Business. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter and follow us on social media.

Subscribe to our newsletter
Builders insurance


Public liability insuranceBusiness insuranceProfessional indemnity insuranceEmployers’ liability insuranceLandlord insuranceTradesman insuranceSelf-employed insuranceRestaurant insuranceVan insuranceInsurers


About usOur teamAwardsPress releasesPartners & affiliatesOur charitable workModern Slavery ActSection 172 statementSocial mediaSite map

Customer support

Contact & supportPolicy renewalMake a claimProof of policyComplaintsAccessibility


6th Floor99 Gresham StreetLondonEC2V 7NG

Northampton 900900 Pavilion DriveNorthamptonNN4 7RG


Careers at Simply BusinessTech careersCurrent opportunities


BenefitsRefer a friendFinance


Terms & conditionsPrivacy policyCookie policyVuln Disclosure policy


Knowledge centreOpinionsMicrosites

© Copyright 2024 Simply Business. All Rights Reserved. Simply Business is a trading name of Xbridge Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Financial Services Registration No: 313348). Xbridge Limited (No: 3967717) has its registered office at 6th Floor, 99 Gresham Street, London, EC2V 7NG.