An introduction to home insurance

In this blog, our home insurance partners, Uinsure, have broken down exactly what home insurance is, why you need it and how you can make sure you have insurance that suits your requirements.

What is home insurance?

Home insurance is split into two parts; buildings insurance and contents insurance.

Buildings insurance is a mandatory requirement of virtually all UK mortgages and is used to insure the structural aspects of your home – so the walls, ceilings, roof and even fixed fittings like bathrooms and kitchens.  

Contents insurance is generally for the things you would take with you if you were moving house. So fridges, freezers, sofas and you can often add on extras to cover things like your phone, laptop and bike.  

How do I get home insurance?

Fortunately, getting home insurance doesn’t have to be the long, arduous process it once was. If you haven’t had home insurance before, the application was pretty similar to car insurance where you’d be asked anything from 30-50 questions. However, Uinsure has developed technology that means you don’t have to answer any difficult questions, like what locks you have on your door, and can get a quote in 20 seconds. Try it for yourself here.  

What home insurance policy is right for me?

It’s vital you get home insurance that fits your needs otherwise you may well find you’re under insured should you need to claim. This means your insurer won’t pay out for the amount it would cost to replace either your buildings or your contents, or both, if something has gone wrong.  

There’s several things you need to do to make sure you’re not under insured.  

You need to make sure the rebuild cost of your house is accounted for should your house be severely damaged and need to be rebuilt. Most good policies cover for £1m which is sufficient for the vast majority of UK homes.  

You also want to make sure that the contents cover is enough to replace all of the items in your home. Higher cover level policies, like Uinsure’s, have £75k as standard and will replace your possessions from new should you need to claim – but not all insurers have the same policy.  

The final things to check are some of the more technical and confusing aspects of home insurance.  

Accidental damage is one element that’s often an optional extra. 1 in 10 insurance claims are for accidental damage, so it’s worth considering when you’re sorting your policy.

And another big one to look at is cover linked to water damage. 1 in 4 water damage claims are caused by neighbours whilst water damage itself is what insurers pay out most on each year. It’s important to make sure you have cover that includes Trace and Access – this means your insurer will not only pay for damage done by any water leak but also to find the source. Without this, bills to find the repair fall on the homeowner and can be quite expensive.

How do I know if I’m getting a good home insurance policy?

Defaqto is an independent body that rates home insurance policies. The most comprehensive polices have 5 stars – this means that if you have a 5 star Defaqto rated policy you’ll have some of the most in depth cover on the market.

How can I pay for home insurance?

Most people in today’s market choose to pay for their home insurance policies on a monthly basis, although you can still pay annually if you prefer and it is often cheaper to do so.

If you have any questions about any what insurances you need, you can book to speak to our advisers or speak to us on webchat.

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