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  • At my wits end- Van/camper/conversion who knows insurance! please help
  • Premier Icon walla24
    Free Member

    Ok so I have just been pillaged to get my van through the MOT but am now being refused insurance literally everywhere.

    The facts:
    My van is a 52 plate Renault kangoo van with:
    LPG/dual fuel conversion
    side window added
    double gas burner
    fold out 2m bed

    I am under 25 and currently unemployed as I have just got back from 6months travelling, bar anything unexpected I will be atleast part time within 1 month.
    5 years no claims

    The question:
    What do I insure it as?
    I try to insure as a van but they refuse due to either the LPG or because of the fittings sink etc
    I try to insure as a camper but they refuse due to the V5 saying van?? or it just not being enough/professional enough of a coversion.

    I don’t mind who insures me, comprehensive ideally but 3rd/fire/theft is ok….
    Do I just insure as a van and not mention the fittings?
    Can I just say I’m employed?

    Losing my nut!

    Premier Icon PePPeR
    Full Member

    It is pretty difficult to get campers reclassified these days. You’ll need to get it inspected before the V5c will get changed I’m afraid.

    For a vehicle to qualify as a ‘Motor Caravan’ in the UK in the eyes of the DVLA the following permanent fixtures must be present:

    Sleeping Accommodation
    There must be a bed with a minimum length of 6ft or 180cms
    The bed must be an integral part of the vehicle living accommodation area
    The bed must be permanent or converted from seats (the bed can fold away during the day)
    The bed fixtures must be secured directly to the vehicle floor and/or side walls, unless it is over the drivers cab compartment.
    There must be a horizontal sliding door or an outward opening rear or side door.
    Seats and Tables
    There must be a seating area for diners to sit around
    The table can be fixed or detachable
    The table must mount directly to the vehicle floor or side walls
    The table mounting must be secured as a permanent feature, either bolted screwed or welded. The table itself can be detachable.
    Seats must be secured directly to the vehicle floor and/or side walls
    The seats must be secured as a permanent fixture, either bolted, riveted, screwed or welded
    Permanently secured seating must be available for use at a table
    Water Container
    Note: DVLA do not state any requirements regarding water storage. However, most insurance companies state that the water tank should be onboard, or under the chassis. However, some insurance companies are happy with an external water container that can be moved, such as those used with a caravan.
    The vehicle must have an onboard or external (e,g, under the chassis) water container
    Note: The insurer Adrian Flux requires the water container to hold 6 gallons / 27 litres.
    The vehicle must have at least one cupboard, locker or wardrobe
    The cupboard must be an integral part of the living accommodation area
    The cupboard must be a permanent feature, either bolted, riveted, screwed or welded
    The cupboard must be secured directly to the vehicle floor and / or side walls
    The vehicle must have cooking facilities powered by fixed gas, electric hob or microwave oven
    The cooking facilities must be secured directly to the vehicle floor or side wall
    The cooking facilities must be a permanent feature, either bolted, riveted, screwed or welded
    Gas and electric hobs must have a minimum or 2 cooking rings. Microwave ovens must have a power source (don’t just fit one that can’t be used)
    Gas cooking facilities with remote fuel supplies must have the gas supply pipe permanently secured to the vehicle structure
    Gas cooking facilities with remote fuel supplies should have the gas bottle, fuel reservoir secured to the vehicle structure
    The vehicle must have at least one side window

    How to Change a Vans Classification to Camper Van or Motorhome in the UK

    In the UK, changing the classification of a van to a campervan or motorhome is fairly straightforward. The following information is based on real experience, correct at the time of the re-classification. This serves as a good guide, but please contact the DVLA and/or VOSA to confirm the rules regarding your vehicle.

    When your conversion is complete, and your van is now (nearly) a camper van or motorhome you need to contact the DVLA and inform them.
    You should change your V5C (log book) document and return it to them. You need to change the vehicle body type to “Motor Caravan”. Motor Caravan is the term used by the DVLA for campervans and motorhomes. See the DirectGov website for details on changing your V5 document.
    You should also include a covering letter, briefly covering what you have done to the vehicle. Also include photographs of your converted vehicle. Dont include too many. Between 10 and 20 are required. Do ensure that you include the vehicles number plate in a shot of the front of the vehicle, and a shot of the back of the vehicle. From the photos the DVLA can see if you have done a good conversion to the vehicle, or simply thrown a mattress in the back.
    Send the paperwork to:
    SA99 1BA
    If you have done a good conversion, and the DVLA are satisfied they will return a new V5 document to you, with the body type changed.
    However, if they are unsure of your conversion they will ask you to visit the local DVLA inspection office. An agent will inspect the vehicle before recommending any change of documentation.
    The DVLA do not publish strict guidelines for the above. However, The Department of Transport do publish a strict ‘motor caravan’ definition for vehicles that are being imported. Click here, and scroll down to ‘Motor caravan’. It’s likely the DVLA also use the same guidelines. However, the strict definitions here are, it seems, open to some interpretation.

    Premier Icon Blazin-saddles
    Free Member

    Give Glynwood Insurance a ring, they are brokers but have always found me good quotes for modified vehicles.

    failing that, Adrian Flux are also recomended for camper insurance.

    You are aware that if you contact DVLA you can change the category from van to mototrhome, this might help with insurance. EDIT beaten to it, but in my experience it was a very easy process, send them photo’s of before and after with a list of what was done and receipts, hey presto, done!

    Premier Icon andrewh
    Free Member

    Ring Adrian flux.
    i’ve got a Transit. Side and rear windows fitted, stove, hot water slide-out bed, interior lights, night heater and insulated. Half the rear is given over to a bike rack. Registered as a van at DVLa, they were happy to insure it as a camper. 8k millage limit, declared value, protected 7yrs NCD. Cost me £204 bargain.
    Being young and unemployed will count against you.
    window,sink,stove,bed. You just need a cupboard and a table to be able to register it as a camper if you wanted to, that would certainly help. If you do that join the caravan club, all the brokers I spoke kept asking if I was member! Add low risk people as named drivers, maybe your parents if they have clean licences. B

    don’t not mention the fittings, you would be in big trouble if you ever needed to claim. However, some comparison sites have a box to tick for modified, then as yours isn’t engine, susupension, bodywork etc you just tick other and move on to the next question.. Don’t blame me if they won’t pay out based on this though…

    Premier Icon pictonroad
    Full Member

    Glynwoods will either insure you or tell you what conditions you need to comply with. Had plenty of campers insured through them, they’re well rated in the VW world.


    Premier Icon spooky_b329
    Full Member

    I found the DVLA wern’t too fussy on their requirements, I just stated what was in the van including pics including one showing the interior and the number plate on rear door at same time. Apply to the Swansea office, don’t try to do it at a local place.

    Try Insurance Choice, Adrian Flux, Frank Pickles.

    Insurance Choice weren’t bothered that my camper was still registered as a van, no cert needed for gas/cooking appliances but without it there is no insurance for fire.

    If they still refuse to quote then tell them you are still converting it and they will give you 3 months to register it as a motorhome and/or simply comply with their idea of what constitutes a conversion. It seems pretty normal for them to extend the conversion period to six months as every one over runs.

    Commuting and mileage over 9,999 will cause you a headache, social/domestic/pleasure and mileage up to £6k seems to be what they expect you to want.

    I’ve changed to Adrian Flux now and big bonus is they will cover me in other cars 3rd party and now insured for fire as long as there is a serviceable extinguisher in the van. Still no need for a certificate for the gas which consists of 30l LPG tank, oven/hob and propex heater.

    Premier Icon walla24
    Free Member

    it does actually have everything on that list 😀
    So maybe I will have a go at changing the V5, ideal if the insurance gives you time to change get it approved.

    Thanks I will ring Adrian Flux and Glynwood a call, and add my Mother on!

    I would never commute so thats fine, but yeah I have no certificates for LPG/Cooker/Electrics as it was a previous owner who did the work.

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Free Member

    Try Lifesure, they seem flexible and have looked after my camper conversion for 6 yrs now.

    Premier Icon lasty
    Free Member

    Its all to do with the low emissions zone in that London place …
    Load of tosh really as youd expect from bullshit “look how were gonna change the world” (without affecting ours) politics that exist today.
    Your camper needs to be classified as such on the V5 and from what you’ve said it shouldn’t be a problem.
    The low emissions thing forces regular hard working tax payers who use a diesel van over a certain age to buy a new one as the old one has been deemed unfit for use within “the zone” ..
    I got a nice and thirsty T2 (petrol) camper – 1975, which does 25 to the gallon on a good day. Mateys 06 Vito does 35+ mpg and is sweet as you could get. Mines ok to use he can use his at £100 a day in the zone or buy a new un …

    Load of tosh – and as usual the rest of the country has to follow suit, even though its totally impractical outside THAT LONDON …

    Sorry – rant over … 😆

    Premier Icon mark90
    Free Member

    My converted van is insured with Insurance choice. It is registered at a Motor Caravan with the DVLA though.

    Send the V5 and a few photos to DVLA at Swansea, showing the conversion details (and at least one with number plate also in shot as mentioned above). If it looks like it’s been ‘permantently’ converted, ie not a matress and camping stove shoved in the back of a builders van, then they will most likely change the class for you.

    It will make insurance much easier.

    Premier Icon jonahtonto
    Free Member

    +1 for adrian flux. my van isnt a camper on the v5, i did the conversion. no probs with flux. £350 a year which is good if you know my history 😳
    i told them my mate did the gas installation and he is corgi registered but didnt give me a certificate cos he did it as a hobble (which is kind of true, he was there drinking beer while i did it casting an eye to make sure i wasnt doing anything stupid)

    Premier Icon mikey-simmo
    Free Member

    We took pictures into the tax office and they took them away and came back and agreed to change it on thd v5 to motor caravan. Sure term direct were the only ones to insure us as for somehow as a journalist, owning a camper is one of the most dangerous things in the world!

    Premier Icon walla24
    Free Member

    still getting mental qoutes from adrian flux (740 fully/540 3rd)

    Premier Icon stevemorg2
    Full Member

    Try Just Kampers (I think they use HIC Insurance) – were great when I bought my T5 – covered it as a van until converted and now as a Camper

    Premier Icon ampthill
    Full Member

    Back in the day my friends and I insured this as a 9 bed motor caravan. So we could drive it across Europe without an hgv

    Premier Icon walla24
    Free Member

    HIC winner!
    Easily lowest prices and includes lots of extras eg legal cover, driving other cars etc etc

    Interestingly being unemployed only affects the price if you are on job seekers, you can specify living on independant means instead.

    Thank you Singletrack!!

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