When do I need to arrange buildings insurance?

Unless the building insurance is being arranged by your lender, or it is a leasehold property and the insurance is dealt with by the freeholder, you should arrange buildings insurance from exchange of contracts as the property will be at your risk from that time. The amount of cover should be the estimated cost of re-building the property if it burns to the ground, which is not necessarily the same as the current market value. If you had a survey or you are obtaining a mortgage your surveyor or the lenders’ valuer will usually have suggested a minimum amount of cover in their report.