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Buildings and Home Contents Insurance in a Nutshell

published on 24/04/2018  

If you have just bought your first home, then it’s time to think about organising your home insurance.

There are two types of home insurance. There’s buildings insurance and home contents insurance. If the property you own is a house, then you’ll need both types. If you own a flat, you may find your leaseholder holds the insurance. Check first, but if this is the case then you will only need home contents insurance.

What’s Covered?

Building insurance will cover the structure of the property from being damage or destroyed. Your home is covered against:

  • Fire
  • Flood
  • Explosion
  • Earthquake
  • Falling objects such as trees
  • Collision with a vehicle
  • Burst pipes
  • Theft or attempted theft
  • Vandalism
The insurance should cover you to repair or replace fencing, pipes, drains and cables. Plus, of course the cost of rebuilding your home if it is destroyed.

There are plenty of insurance companies to choose from. You can check them out online or use a price comparison website. They will give varying levels of cover, so it is worth comparing three or four before you make your final choice. For example, some buildings policies will include fencing, garden furniture and outbuildings. But some will ask you to make an extra payment for this cover.

Extra cover worth paying for is accidental damage insurance. This will protect you if you break a window or put your foot through the loft ceiling.

Contents Insurance

Contents insurance should cover all the things in your home that you would take with you if you moved. Think, carpets, blinds, curtains, furniture, bedding, towels, plates and cutlery. You’ll also be covered for electrical items such as your T.V, music equipment and your computer or laptop. Most insurers will offer cover on a new for old basis, which means you can replace an old item with a new one. Some insurers have limits on the amount they will pay out. If you have valuables such as jewellery or a collection of coins, stamps or pottery that is worth money tell your insurer. It may be that these items will have to be insured separately.

Content insurance can also cover the food in your freezer, money at home or credit cards that you have. Check to see if your policy includes these items and what limits they will pay up to.

Like buildings insurance you can also pay extra for accidental damage insurance. If you spill red wine or your carpet or sofa or you break your TV, you’ll be covered. Another popular add-on is Home Emergency Cover. This includes emergency assistance if your boiler breaks down, or you have a burst pipe.

Make sure you have enough cover. The best way to work out what you need for home contents insurance is to go through each room and list everything in it. Then you can work out how much each item would cost to replace.

Be careful about under-insuring. Don’t tell the insurance company you have two bedrooms when you have three. If you’re found out when you make a claim it could mean that your insurers pay out less than you need. Or, they might refuse to cover you at all.

Insurance gives you security and peace of mind. Shop around and compare policies before you buy. That way you’ll be able to choose a policy that’s perfect for you. Tags: Insurance, Building, Homes, Damage