We’ve all heard the common saying “you get what you pay for” yet we can’t deny that price plays a part in why and where we buy something…
Take home insurance for example, whether you rent or own a property, you care about what happens to the contents and often the building as well. So, if something happened to your home or possessions you rely on your home insurance to help you put it right.
The popularity of comparison websites is usually down to the lure of low premiums but how much thought is given to the quality of the policy?
Here are some tips on what to look for when arranging your home insurance:
1. Do I really need “unlimited” buildings and contents cover?
Some companies offer this because it takes away the hassle of you having to work out what your home and contents are worth, by calculating your sums insured.
However, if something is of value to you, it’s worth insuring properly.
For example, if something happened to your property, you would only be able to claim for the cost of the rebuild as opposed to its market value. This also applies to your contents – while unlimited cover may sound attractive, you may end up paying a high premium for cover you don’t need.
2. Are legal expenses and home emergency cover included as standard?
Some providers see these as “optional extras”, even on an otherwise well rounded policy. As an optional extra, you’re likely to pay more to add them to your policy.
Legal expenses may be helpful when it comes to noisy neighbours or tax investigation costs. Home emergency can be useful for problems like heating failure, or a smashed window, which leaves your home insecure.
3. What about contents covered away from the home?
This is something that’s often overlooked. When you leave your house to go to work, go on holiday, do the school run, what do you have on you at the time? A mobile phone? A watch on your wrist? Engagement or wedding ring? If these things were lost or stolen whilst away from your home, would that amount of money be covered on your policy? Most policies won’t cover this as standard, so it’s always best to check.
Key things to remember
Understanding the policy
When looking through quotes online or talking to an adviser through a broker, make sure you understand what’s included as well as reading the terms and conditions of the policy. It may sound tedious but it could prove to be the difference as to whether a claim is paid or not.
It’s worth taking the time to search for customer reviews of insurance companies and try to find a common theme. Look out for a company who offers great service, including how they deal with claims and if they offer extensive levels of cover.
The most important thing to consider when looking at home insurance, whether you own your house or you just have your contents covered, is can you afford to buy it all again?Find out more about home insurance
Originally published in 2016. Updated in 2018.