01372 360 663 info@chawtonhill.com

Reinstatement Cost Assessments (RCS) may be a requirement of an insurer. Often, they take place as a matter of routine and good practice. This is a service Chawton Hill have been offering to clients for many years. We carry them out for schools, commercial properties, and other types of building across the South-East of England.

What are they?

The clue is in the title. In the event of a total loss of a building or property due to fire or some other insured peril, an accurate valuation will be needed. This is to ensure the property is not under-insured. Or indeed, to ensure you are not over-insuring the property unnecessarily.

A surveyor will use a number of techniques to identify a reasonable sum to reinstate the property in the event of a catastrophic loss. Following a visit to site, the surveyor will identify the potential cost of clearing, organising design, professional services and re-constructing the building.

A Reinstatement Cost Assessment is unlike a market or property valuation. It will identify all the costs in rebuilding a property if it is completely destroyed, or damaged beyond economic repair.

These surveys are crucial for any property, whether in the education sector, healthcare, residential or commercial. Insurers will want an accurate assessment of the property value.


The RICS recommend having a survey completed regularly to ensure any changes in value are taken into account. There are many factors that can affect the cost to reinstate a building. Some examples include:

  • Labour costs. Recent years have seen significant increases in labour costs, as skilled labour has either left the country or re-trained into different areas.
  • Material costs. Again, recent years have seen major increases in the costs of materials such as timber and steel. The latter having almost doubled in price over a twelve-month period.
  • Changes in the local environment. Any number of alterations to the area in which the property sits may affect the cost to reinstate.
  • Changes to the property itself. It may sound obvious, but if a significant extension or refurbishment of a property takes place, that will change the value. All too often, people forget the effects of such changes.

There is no specific timescale for re-surveying a property. The RICS, and insurers, Allianz suggest that yearly may be too frequent. However, we recommend around every three years or at the point any significant change takes place on the property. In any case, an index-linked increase is prudent to take into account any regular increases in cost, etc.

Ultimately, carrying out a reinstatement survey is something you need to take a judgement call on, but it could help you avoid losing out in the event of disaster. Should you need or be interested in having your property valued for reinstatement, do get in touch today.