Self Build Motorhome insurance - Campervan Conversion Insurance

Campervan Conversion Insurance UK

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Self build motorhome insurance policy

A self build motorhome insurance policy is specifically designed for the person that either builds their own motorhome or has one built for them. The insurance industry classifies them as a converted van, but the platform on which they are made can include any type of vehicle, including vans or trucks. This type of insurance is also referred to as campervan conversion Insurance.

Difference between campervan conversion insurance and self-build insurance  

Campervan conversion insurance tends to be associated with making modification to an actual motorhome that was bought direct from campervan  manufacturer. Whereas a self build is the case that you do an actual conversion from a van into a campervan.  In both cases you must notify the broker of any conversions made or indeed if the vehicle is a complete self build.

Is insurance available for campervan conversions and self builds

We have a panel of UK brokers that deal exclusively in campervan insurance in the UK. These brokers' can provide you with comparative quotes on a  self build or a campervan with modifications. Some examples of modifications include, adding  a  pop-top, seats, windows, new kitchen fittings,  extra power sources, a new heating system, adding or removing windows and the list goes on. These must be mentioned on your insurance application, if in doubt best to notify the broker and let them decide if it has any impact on your premium.

Can anyone convert a vehicle to a campervan?

This type of project can be undertaken by anyone as long as they have the skills to complete the job. What is restricted by the UK government is what has to be included in the campervan conversion so the DVLA will be able to classify it as a motorhome. With this new classification, the motorhome can be insured as a motorhome and not a van or a truck. This is important since the value of the vehicle will increase once the conversion is completed, which is essential when insuring the vehicle properly.

All conversions must have these permanent accessories in the interior, including;

  • 6’ bed
  • water tank
  • Storage such as drawers and cabinetry
  • Cooking facility such as microwave and or range
  • Door to the living area
  • Dining area with table and seating
  • Window in the living area

To incorporate all the requirements can be a challenge, but is possible with planning. One path is to have the dining area convert to the bed. The cooking and sink can be on top of the storage area as in cabinets and or drawers. Most vans already have a side or rear door, and most also have a window in the back of the vehicle.

When can I have motorhome insurance on the converted vehicle?

The vehicle can be covered before the conversion begins or upon its completion. If the vehicle is not insured during the modification process, it can’t be test driven. During the modification process, it will remain classified as it was when it was purchased.

From the start of the campervan conversion to the completion, there is a 180-day grace period when insurance is on the vehicle from the beginning. In that time, photographs must be taken at on specific dates. These dates include at minimum 4 photos of the original vehicle before any work is done. More photos at the halfway point or 90 days and then at its completion of 180 day whichever comes first.

There must be both interior and exterior photos taken, with the first set being 4 photos and the other two sets being 6 photos each. For more details on this subject, please read our guide to our read our guide to the average price of motorhome insurance  in 2021.

The person doing the conversion must also record the modifications in the vehicle's V5C log. This log along with the photographs must be sent into the DVLA so the vehicle can be reclassified as a motorhome and its new market values can be set. Once this occurs, the self build motorhome can be insured as a motorhome. We recommend checking the details direct from the DVLA website, converting a vehicle into a motorhome.

What level of insurance can the motorhome have?

A registered campervan can be insured at two different levels, which include;

  • Third Party Only cover is the minimum level of insurance required under UK law. If the vehicle is involved in an accident where the owner of the self build motorhome is at fault, the owner will be responsible for all repair bills to their vehicle.
  • Full Comprehensive cover takes care of all the medical and repair bills for both vehicles involved in an accident where the motorhome driver is at fault. Personal items in the motorhome will also be covered. This amount can be from £500 to £10,000 and is set at the time the policy is taken out.

Is there any additional coverage that can be added to the policy?

Since the motorhome will be parked in multiple places, Liability cover is recommended just in case a complaint is filed against the motorhome owner for damages claimed by a third party. This level of cover can be up to £100,000.

For roadside assistance when a problem occurs on the road, breakdown cover can be added to the motorhome policy. This will provide assistance when the vehicle breaks down on the road and if not repairable, it will be towed to a repair facility.

An add-on specifically designed for a motorhome owner is Fire cover for protection when a fire occurs during mealtime preparation.

How can I save money on my Campervan Conversion policy?

  • The insurance premium costs can also be reduced by increasing the excess on the motorhome policy. The excess is similar to a van hire excess when you hire a van. The excess is a deductible that you are liable for. Increasing this will show you as more responsible with a lower risk. This should be reward by a cheaper quote for campervan conversion insurance.
  • Safe Parking : Can you provide safe off road parking, or netter still in a secure and locked location when not in use.
  • Security: Add a tracking device that is approved by the UK insurance industry, other less expensive options are using wheel locks.  
  • Driver Age : Motorhome insurance for under 25's is more expensive than for drivers over 25 with a few years driving experience. As such if possible keep the policy for names drivers only that are over 25

Since most motorhome owners have other vehicles, by placing all the vehicles registered at the home residence of the motorhome owner, money can be saved. By placing all the vehicles under one umbrella policy, a discount will be provided to the owners. The vehicles that can be included: motorbikes, scooters, cars and small vans. For more details, please read check out the article on multi van insurance.  Another popular choice is family fleet insurance, the only condition is that all vehicles  must be registered at the home address.

Having the correct type of self build motorhome or campervan conversion insurance policy is essential to having the right type of cover for your investment. This makes it possible to have your dream home on wheels protected so that it can be enjoyed for many years into the future.

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