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Do I have to Buy Separate Insurance to Cover A Building Move?

Relocating a building from one property to another requires planning, coordination, and yes, insurance. While your contractor will have insurance to cover their part, should you buy separate insurance to cover other aspects of the building move?

In this article, we walk you through what to expect regarding your contractor’s coverage and why investing in your own policy is a smart idea.

Understanding Building Move Insurance

When planning to relocate a building, one of the first considerations should be whether your current insurance covers such an endeavor or if additional policies are needed. Building move insurance is specialized coverage designed to protect your property from the unique risks associated with physically moving it from one location to another.

What is Building Move Insurance? Building move insurance is a specific type of policy that covers damage to your building during the relocation process. It differs from standard property insurance, which typically covers only stationary risks—like fire, theft, or natural disasters—and often excludes or limits coverage for any damages occurring while the building is being moved.

Why is it Different from Standard Property Insurance? Standard property insurance policies are designed to address the risks associated with a building in a fixed location. These policies are not structured to cover transportation risks or the unique stresses a building faces when lifted off its foundation and moved. The dynamic nature of a building move—such as potential structural stresses, risks of accidents during transport, and the need for precise handling—requires a more tailored approach to risk management.

Components of Building Move Insurance:

  • Transit Coverage: This ensures the building is covered against damage while in transit, whether by road, barge, or any other means.
  • Loading and Unloading Coverage: This coverage protects against damage that might occur when the building is being loaded onto or off of transport vehicles.
  • Storage Coverage: If the move requires that the building be stored temporarily, this coverage protects against risks during this period.

Types of Insurance Needed for Building Moves

Several types of insurance might be required to protect your property during a full move. Each type serves a specific purpose, addressing different aspects of the risks involved in the relocation process. Understanding these can help you ensure comprehensive coverage.

Please note that Devooght has insurance, so please talk with them before purchasing additional insurance – as it may not be necessary.

1. General Liability Insurance: General Liability Insurance is fundamental for any construction or relocation project. This insurance protects against claims of property damage or bodily injury to third parties that could occur during the moving process. For example, general liability coverage would handle the associated costs if the building accidentally damages another property or injures a bystander.

2. Inland Marine Policy: Despite its name, Inland Marine Insurance covers more than just maritime activities. It is crucial for covering goods, equipment, and, yes, buildings while they are being transported over land. For a building move, this policy ensures that the structure and its components are covered against loss or damage while in transit from one site to another.

3. Builder’s Risk Insurance: Builder’s Risk Insurance provides coverage for buildings under construction, renovation, or, in this case, relocation. Depending on the policy, it typically covers damage due to events like fire, wind, theft, vandalism, and sometimes specific natural disasters. It’s particularly important for a building move, as it covers the structure until it is safely installed and completed at the new location.

4. Additional Coverage Considerations:

  • Flood Insurance: If your building is being moved to or from a flood-prone area or if parts of the journey will cross such regions, it’s wise to consider flood insurance.
  • Earthquake Insurance: Similarly, earthquake insurance may be necessary if seismic activity is a concern in the old or new location.
  • Storage Insurance: If the building or its components need storage during the move, consider insurance coverage specifically for storage periods to protect against theft, damage, or loss.

Planning for Your Move

When mapping out your home or building relocation, you likely have a checklist of things you need to plan for and take care of: permits, contractors, loans, utilities, and more. But there’s one factor –– perhaps the most important factor of your entire move –– that you must not forget. When you move a building, house, or any other kind of structure, you must confirm that the project is insured.

As you plan for a move, you need to determine what kind of coverage the project requires. The structure itself needs to be insured in case of damage. The contractor you choose should be insured. And you need insurance for possible damage to personal items or anything not covered in your contractor’s policy.

Work with an Insured Contractor

The most important choice you will make regarding your home or building relocation is the contractor you choose. Your moving contractor should have the experience and expertise to move your structure safely and with confidence.

As you consider options for moving contractors, your first question should be “Are you insured?” Any reputable, professional structural relocation company will quickly confirm that they’re insured to move your home, building, or other structure.

Though an experienced relocation firm should be able to move your building from point A to point B with no issue, structural relocation is always a high-stakes event. Your contractor must plan for the safety of their crew and passersby; maintaining the structural integrity of the building; and preventing damage to your possessions. Possessing adequate insurance coverage aids in all these considerations.

The team at DeVooght House Lifters never expects significant damage or personal injury because we make every effort to move your home successfully. But to best care for our crew and our clients, we are insured for every project.

We know choosing a moving contractor has many implications for your relocation. At DeVooght, we come to each project fully prepared and fully insured. It’s the first step we take to make sure you have a safe and successful move, regardless of the size or scope of the project.

What Does My Contractor’s Insurance Cover?

As soon as you confirm your contractor has insurance to cover your building move, ask them what it covers. Professional structural movers will have a comprehensive insurance policy that covers your building move and any incidental structural damage.

Your contractor’s insurance should cover damage that occurs during the lifting and moving of your building. While you are responsible for preparing your building for relocation, your contractor takes the reigns during transportation. That means they need a plan that covers every possible incident during this time.

While every relocation project is different, one thing remains the same regardless of the job: your contractor needs an insurance plan that covers your move.

Do I Need Additional Insurance?

By now you know that you need to choose a moving contractor with a comprehensive insurance policy. But even if your movers have the best insurance for their business, you need to purchase supplemental insurance to cover your building’s move, too.

Your contractor’s insurance covers damage resulting from the move or where the contractor is at fault. But it won’t cover problems that arise from preexisting issues. For example, if your home had structural damage that you weren’t aware of, and that damage was exposed and exacerbated because of the move, your contractor isn’t liable.

Thankfully, many insurance companies sell short-term policies that cover building moves. As you plan with your contractor, purchase additional coverage for your home or structure. Having additional insurance gives you peace of mind that no matter what happens, you won’t have to pay for damages out of pocket.


When you hire the right moving contractor, you won’t have to worry about uninsured team members or an insurance lapse that will put you in a serious financial bind. DeVooght House Lifters has decades of experience lifting and moving structures of all types.

Fully insured and ready to serve you every step of the way, our team can answer your insurance questions to ensure you’ve got the right coverage for your building move. Contact us to get started today.

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