Extent of home insurance cover

It can be difficult to decide what extent of cover you as an individual or family homeowner require. You can choose to purchase buildings and contents insurance either separately or together. Some insurers will offer you a discount if you take out both their buildings and their contents insurance together.

With buildings insurance, you must feel confident that the amount of money available from the insurance company would be sufficient to rebuild your home. You can get a builder to estimate how much the rebuild cost would be, and bear this in mind when choosing your policy. It is worth re-doing this if you change or extend your property. When new homes are surveyed, the figures incorporated in the survey can be used to determine the cost.

When it comes to your contents insurance, most insurers place a limit on the overall value that you can claim. Generally, this stands at around £30,000. Many insurers will not go above their set level for specific valuable possessions. It is common in contents insurance for the policyholder to undervalue their possessions. It is estimated that many contents policies are under insured. Set Item Limits are also worth being aware of. They are included for single objects of value, and some of your possessions may exceed this. In this instance you can either negotiate with the insurer or insure the item separately.

When looking at contents insurance, you should bear in mind whether the policy covers accidental damage, cover for the food within your freezer, and away from home cover. You should also make sure your policy is valid from the day that you sign the contract, as opposed to the day that you move into the house.

Insurance is not fixed, as both your buildings and contents will change. You need to keep your policy up to date with any changes that your make. Failure to keep insurance companies informed is an ideal loophole that they can exploit to make the claims procedure more difficult.