Ecclesiastical Heritage Index
15 January 2023
The Ecclesiastical Heritage Index (EHI) is the first of its kind and is exclusive to Ecclesiastical customers. It tracks the cost of materials and labour associated specifically with buildings of a traditional construction reducing the risk of underinsurance.
Supporting our customers
The standard General Buildings Cost Index (GBCI) for commercial and House Rebuilding Cost Index (HRCI) for domestic properties are structured around modern construction costs (post WWII). Some specialist elements required to rebuild/repair a traditional building, such as stone masonry, slate and lead, may not be adequately included in the standard indices, if at all. They are included in the Ecclesiastical Heritage Index.
Powered by the Building Cost Information Service (BCIS), this unique index helps to ensure that building sums insured are maintained at an adequate level to support the repair and restoration of a traditional property when damaged and to avoid underinsurance in the event of a claim.
What is the purpose of an index?
An insurance valuation should be undertaken on most properties every 3-5 years, or at the start of a new contract. A valuation identifies the cost to rebuild a property and is based on the materials and labour required and the cost of them at that time. As time goes by, the cost of those materials and labour fluctuate and a ‘Buildings Cost Index’ tracks those fluctuations. At the time of an insurance renewal, the sum insured is adjusted in line with the index and the premium will be revised accordingly. As the sum insured tracks against an index, in the event of a claim, the payment amount should reflect the costs required to rebuild/reinstate the property at the time of the claim.
What are the standard indices?
There are several indices but the two common ones are: the General Building Cost Index (GBCI) for commercial buildings and the House Rebuilding Cost Index (HRCI) for domestic buildings. Like the EHI they are developed by BCIS.
“The BCIS is the leading independent provider of cost and price information to the construction industry and produce the various indices used by the financial service industry.
BCIS are delighted to have produced the Ecclesiastical Heritage Index (EHI) in collaboration with Ecclesiastical, using Ecclesiastical’s specialist knowledge of heritage properties.
James Fiske, Director of Product Delivery and Operations – Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS)
"The new index tracks the cost of the appropriate and specific resources required to rebuild/repair a heritage property and should help to reduce the risk of underinsurance to Ecclesiastical’s clients."
Setting and maintaining the correct building sum insured is vitally important but a difficult task to complete, especially for older buildings. Ecclesiastical is proud to offer a unique range of solutions to help combat this industry-wide issue and our Ecclesiastical Heritage Index is a wonderful complement to our in-house valuation service.
Jo Whyman, Risk Management Director - Ecclesiastical