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Insurance Cover For Your Home
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Your home is likely to be your most prized asset and although not compulsory, can you afford not to have home insurance cover in place. We provide quotations for your home buildings, contents, contents taken away from the property, public liability and legal expenses cover. We will also provide quotations with and without Accidental Damage cover.
For a free home insurance quotation just click on the button opposite, complete the simple quotation form and we will back to you as soon as possible with our best options. Alternatively you can contact our office on 01288 353999 where a trained member of staff can arrange an immediate quotation and if necessary cover, right over the phone.
House Insurance Explained
With Tips and Tricks On How To Reduce Your Costs!!
Do I Need Household Insurance?
Although not compulsory, if you own your own home then you should definitely purchase adequate house buildings insurance. It can be a huge worry thinking about a possible loss like fire or storm damage to the premises. It’s also advisable to insure your contents and again not compulsory, but could you replace the items easily in the event of a major loss.
Because it’s not compulsory there are still a lot of people who’s thinking is “bad things will never happen to me”, but stats say otherwise. One in three of us will get burgled at some point in our lives, with weather conditions becoming more unpredictable, can you afford to be without adequate cover.
Cover on our policies will include – storm and flood damage, fire, smoke and explosions, burst pipes and other incidents of water leakage, vandalism and third party damage, alternative accommodation if your home is uninhabitable, you can also extend the policies to include accidental damage cover and legal expenses cover.
If the property is owned on a mortgage then you will probably find that your mortgagees will insist on having insurance as they will have a financial interest in the property.
What Exactly Do I Need To Cover?
Buildings. If you don’t own the property then you will not be responsible for insuring the property. If you do own the property then you will need to insure the buildings for it’s full rebuilding cost. This will include permanent fixtures and fittings like fitted kitchens and bathroom suites, any outbuildings, garages, drives patios, fences, gates, swimming pools, fixed fuel tanks and underground pipes and cables for which you are legally responsible. You also need to add on additional costs for debris removal and architects fees.
Contents. Contents cover comprises basically any item that you would take away with you if you moved house. You should go through every room in your home and add up what it would cost to replace everything with an equivalent new item. This will include carpets, furniture, free standing cupboards, items inside cupboards, clothing, and contents of garages and sheds.
All our policies are ‘New for Old’ cover, which means if the event of a claim you will be paid out for an equivalent new item. If you are on or have been quoted an ‘Indemnity’ based policy, do not take it out, it’s such an inferior policy to a ‘New for Old policy and it wont be any cheaper.
Personal Possessions. If you have any contents items which you wish to insure whilst taken away from the property, then you can extend your policy to include contents away from the property. You can have Unspecified Personal Possessions which will give you a set amount of cover, say £2,000 with a single article limit of normally £1,000 – £1,500. For items more expensive than this you may need to Specify the individual items, and valuations may be required.
How Do I Calculate How Much Cover I Require?
Buildings. You don’t insure for the current market value of the property. You insure for the full rebuilding cost of the property, which is generally a lot lower than the ‘for sale’ price. You don’t have to take in to account the land, but you do need to add costs for debris removal and architects and professional fees. If you have a mortgage then you will find the rebuilding cost of the property in any valuation report or survey. You may want to get a surveyor in to advise you on the rebuilding costs, an insurance broker or company are not aloud to tell you what to insure for although they may be able to advise you on how you can work out the rebuilding costs. The Association of British Insurers offer useful advice and information, they will also tell you how to work out the rebuilding cost of your house.
Contents. Your contents should be based on what it will cost to replace your items at today’s prices.
How To Obtain Home Insurance Cover.
There are more and more ways of obtaining household insurance, through an insurance broker, directly with an insurance company, through online comparison sites, even through a supermarket, but which is the best way to obtain insurance?
By going directly to an insurance company like Aviva Direct or Direct Line for example, they say they can reduce costs by cutting out the the middleman, this may save them on small costs, but they must spend much more on direct marketing to the public, also they can only ever quote themselves so in most instances they are not going to be the cheapest option anyway.
Comparison or aggregator sites work in a similar way to insurance brokers in the fact that they compare quotes through a panel of insurance companies. That’s about where the similarities end. With comparison sites you are responsible that the information you input is correct. The sites check for the cheapest policies, but the cheapest policies often have inadequate cover, policy restrictions like security requirements or maybe have a much higher excess in the event of a claim, these sites will not tell you about these clauses, it is basically down to you to ensure the policy is adequate, most times you wont know about these restrictions until you come to make a claim and suddenly you find you’re not paid out for it..
Insurance brokers will search a large panel of selected insurance companies and although they will look to find the cheapest policy for you, they will explain any restrictions a policy may have like full policy excesses etc or clauses to ensure you are aware of them and that the policy quoted is right for your needs as a home owner. If you have any problems or need to make a claim you can speak to someone in the UK and a broker will be able to provide you with advice on mid-term changes or claims. At the renewal time they will also automatically search the market again for you to ensure your current insurers are still the most suitable option for you. A direct company or aggregator site will not provide this level of service.
So We Advise, Use An Insurance Broker!
Tips On How To Reduce Prices & Have Adequate Insurance Cover
Put Buildings & Contents Together. By adding the buildings and the contents all to one policies most insurers will give up to 10% discount. Also in the event of a claim you only have one insurer to deal with and you wont have different insurers saying they aren’t responsible for this and that.
Sums Insured. Although you should make sure that the sums insured are adequate, don’t completely over insure the buildings and contents. A lot of policies will give you automatic cover up to a set limit, although a lot of these policies are very good, make sure you are not being overcharged for the privilege.
Accidental Damage Cover. If you are clumsy or have kids then having this cover may be a benefit. You pay a bit extra for the cover, but in the event you accidentally damage something you will be paid out for it. This is where the majority of small claims occur, but if you think you are careful enough, don’t include the cover, some insurers will automatically include this cover without even telling you that it’s extra.
Security. By having modern locks on doors and having key operated window locks you may get a small discount. However some insurers may refuse a claim if say you are broken into and a window lock was not locked, so check before accepting a discount for this. Your best bet is to add smoke detectors and become a member of a neighbourhood watch scheme and up to 10% discounts are available for these additions.
If you are going to install an alarm system you should go for a NACOSS approved system as these are the one’s which are recognised for discounts by insurers, again though make sure the insurers don’t penalise you if it is switched off and you have a theft at the property.
Working From Home. If you work or run a business from home make sure your cover is adequate. Most insurers will not insure you under a household policy, you will probably require a working from home policy. Private house insurance policies exclude business contents, and public liability for the business, including customers coming to the house. Get a Working From Home policy.
No Claims Bonus. Most insurers will give large discounts for not making claims, so for smaller losses you will probably find it’s better not to claim. You will also normally have a minimum £50 excess on the policy.
Pay Annually. To save costs and if you can afford it, pay outright for your annual insurance policy. Insurers will charge up to 15% extra a year for spreading your payments over the year.