O’Callaghan Insurances: Are my farm buildings adequately insured?

This is probably the trickiest area of farm insurance since there are many different types of farmyard buildings ranging from modern slatted sheds to old stone loose cattle sheds.

The basic rule is that your farm buildings should be insured for the cost of replacing the building in the event of a total loss. However, O’Callaghan Insurances recommends that you deduct the cost of replacing a slurry tank since this will not have to be replaced in the event of a fire or storm.

A picture tells a thousand words…

Farm rebuilding Guide

Loose stone cattle shed

The rebuild cost is €45/ft² with a corrugated roof, or €95/ft² with a slate roof.

Modern loose cattle shed

This building includes: a concrete floor; a slurry collection bank; and a steel frame. The walls are part concrete and part cladding. The rebuild cost is €30/ft² and does not include the area of the tank.

Round roof hayshed

The rebuild cost is €11/ft² with no concrete floor; or €14/ft² with a concrete floor.

Slatted shed for cows

This includes: a concrete floor; precast concrete slats; gates and cattle pins; an underground slurry collection tank; steel frame with reinforced cladding; and walls which are part concrete and part cladding. The rebuild cost is €33/ft².

Machinery shed / general purpose shed

The rebuild cost is €25/ft².

Farmyard building break down

It is important to get your buildings sum insured right when arranging or renewing your farm insurance policy. The danger in getting it wrong, or too low, will become apparent when there is a claim on the policy.

The insurance company will appoint a loss adjustor to settle your claim. The loss adjustor is working in the interests of the insurance company and not you – the farmer. Their objective is to settle the claim, quickly and as cheaply as possible.

If they believe there is underinsurance, they will proportionally reduce the claim payment in line with the underinsurance. Similarly, there is also no advantage in over-insuring your buildings – you will only end up paying too much premium to the insurance company.

O’Callaghan Insurances always advises farmers to break down their outbuildings and sheds. The team would like to see each one listed on an insurance policy schedule with its own rebuilding sum insured.

Doing it this way makes it easier for you, the farmer, not to forget about a building or shed; it makes the sum insured more accurate and always helps make the picture clearer for everybody, especially when there is a claim

Insurance Companies Differ

There are four insurance companies offering farm insurance products and they are all a little bit different.

For instance, only two give storm damage cover in respect of farm buildings and there are various conditions attached in order for storm cover to be granted. The insurers also have different policy excesses.

Talk to O’Callaghan Insurances and the team will give you advice.

Fabulous Additional Features and Benefits

  • Farm outbuildings that are less than 40 year’s old are insured for storm damage as standard.
  • Storm damage is also included for milking equipment.
  • Fire brigade charges up to €15,000 are also included for farm outbuildings.
  • Theft of implements and equipment covered automatically once certain minimum security requirements are met.
  • Theft of diesel and damage to the holding tank included automatically.
  • All Risks Cover available for special agricultural equipment.

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