Decennial insurance for inexperienced craftsman: how to find it?


Decennial insurance is legally binding on all building and public works craftsmen. It is therefore necessary to be insured in order to be able to exercise and launch an entrepreneurial activity.

In fact, when you are a micro-entrepreneur, a young craftsman who has just graduated or a very small business, it is not so easy to find an insurer who agrees to cover the risk.

Fortunately, insurance solutions exist even for novice or inexperienced craftsmen. We are going around the question to help you find your ten-year guarantee.

The essentials to know about ten-year insurance

Anyone intervening on the construction site of a house or an apartment, in a private or professional capacity, is responsible for the quality of the work that he has carried out during the ten years following their reception.

This legal and unequivocal notion allows the owner of the property concerned to seek the responsibility of the craftsman intervening on the frame of a building. Decennial insurance applies for the most serious construction defects.

It aims to compensate the owner of the property if the observed defects affect the solidity of the building or make it unfit for its purpose, or even uninhabitable if it is a dwelling.

Faced with this risk, the legislator has implemented the ten-year insurance obligation for all building tradesmen. Decennial insurance can cover a variety of events, such as water and air infiltration, subsidence of the floor or the ceiling endangering the occupants, etc.

The acceptance conditions for subscribing to a ten-year guarantee

Not all insurers have the same risk acceptance practices. Some offer some flexibility and accept beginners for an additional premium, while others refuse them.

In practice, insurance companies require guarantees relating to the experience or diplomas of the craftsman, and sometimes require these two conditions.

Conditions relating to diplomas

To be able to contract a ten-year guarantee, the insurer will check your diplomas. They can be materialized by professional qualification titles, or by a minimum of experience.

It is therefore necessary to meet at least one of the two following conditions, to access the majority of contracts:

  • Professional titles: these are CAP, BEP, vocational bac or professional BTS, foreign diplomas may be accepted under conditions
  • Professional experience of 3 years or more: in the absence of diplomas, these can prove your mastery of the profession thanks to a professional qualification certificate

The diplomas are not systematically requested by insurers in ten years, but the professional qualification is verified. Indeed, let us remember that the craftsmen of the construction, maintenance and repair of the building exercise a regulated activity. This applies to trades in structural work, finishing work and building finishing.

Good to know : if you have three years of professional experience in a specific trade (painter, tiler, mason, etc.), you can approach the CMA (Chamber of Trades and Crafts) in your region. Indeed, this one can issue you, on file, a certificate of professional qualification. Not only will it help you find ten-year insurance, but it has the same value as a diploma. This certificate of equivalence will therefore be useful to you later on to access new training courses and to assert your legitimacy with your customers.

Conditions relating to professional experience

Experience prevails over diplomas to be eligible for the ten-year guarantee. It must be proven by all means to your insurer. The duration of experience is as follows:

  • At least 3 years of professional experience for the shell: formworker, carpenter, etc.
  • At least 2 years of professional experience for finishing and finishing work: heating engineer, carpenter, plumber, painter, etc.

To prove your professional experience, you can provide the insurer with the following documents:

  • Successive employment contracts, including work-study contracts
  • The payslips with the title of your job
  • Invoices issued in the name of your customers

Good to know : each activity requires experience, if you are a mason and electrician for example, you will therefore need to prove your experience in both areas to be guaranteed by means of a ten-year insurance for all your activities.

If the insurer refuses you when you have the necessary diplomas or experience, do not panic, you will find another insurer who will accept the risk …

Find ten-year insurance without professional experience

The building craftsman performs one or more so-called “regulated” trades. If you are neither graduated nor experienced, you will expose yourself to systematic and justified refusals. Even if an insurer would accept you, he could oppose a forfeiture of guarantees, because you did not have the right to exercise.

If you are in this case, we can only advise you to train yourself, either by obtaining diplomas, or by becoming an employee of a company for which you will work with an authorized professional who supervises you.

On the other hand, if you are graduate or experienced, but the insurer refuses you for lack of experience, you can call on an insurance broker specializing in professionals, or find a more accommodating insurer by playing the competition.

By using an online simulator, you will find ten-year guarantee offers tailored to your business launch. By providing precise information on your experiences and diplomas, our comparator will allow you to obtain several quotes before you decide.

Our tip: The first year of insurance can have a relatively high cost due to your “beginner” status. You should not hesitate to renegotiate the terms of your contract after each year of activity, and to change insurer if the rate is not revised downwards.

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