Insuring your home can be unnecessarily confusing if you purchase a policy online with an insurer. Without reading the policy wording carefully you may not get the cover you think you are buying. There are many important sections of cover that should be included in your policy to ensure your valuable assets are properly protected. These range from simply making sure you are insuring your building for its full replacement cost, to protecting your valuables or portable contents when you are away from your home.
Here’s five important points that you should always consider when insuring your home and contents.
Insuring your home for the right sum
One of the most important factors when insuring your home is the amount you are insuring it for. When you go online and buy the insurance you are asked what you would like to ensure your building for and like most homeowners, you most likely guess what you believe the rebuild cost to be.
This ‘guesswork’ could leave you hundreds of thousands of dollars underinsured putting you in a financially catastrophic position in the event of a partial or total loss.
Type or Policy you are purchasing
There are two forms of Home and Contents insurance policies which are ‘Accidental Loss or Damage’ and ‘Defined Events’
‘Defined Events’ is a basic policy and only covers your assets against Fire, Storm, Flood, Earthquake, Lighting Strikes, Impact and Theft. ‘Accidental Loss or Damage’ provides far broader protection and 40% of claims fall under this cover. It provides all the cover in a ‘Defined Events’ policy and more. Protecting your assets against accidental losses like a smashed television after an accident, losing your jewellery or watch when you are away from you home, accidental scorching or electrical failure for your fridge or freezer, are just a few common actions that are covered. An accidental damage policy also provides more protection offers you benefits like temporary accommodation, food spoilage replacement, exploratory costs and more.
If you want confidence in your insurance coverage then you need to consider an ‘Accidental Loss or Damage’ policy
Personal Valuables Cover
This covers your personal valuables like jewellery, watches, art and other collections and is usually automatically included in a good ‘Accidental Loss or Damage’ policy. At Burstow’s, we recommend coverage up to a certain limit. On the most comprehensive policies that we have sourced from the market as a limit of up to around $12 500 per item, set or collection.
If you need more cover for a special piece of jewellery, it’s important to let your broker know and they can note this on your cover. If your individual piece insurance doesn’t cover your engagement ring, diamond necklace or that family artwork you may be out of pocket when it comes time to claim.
Cover for your Contents away from your home
This cover is not included in ‘Defined Events’ policies but can save you thousands in accidental losses or damages if an accident does occur when you are away from home. There have been cases where an insured person lost their watch overseas but because they had taken out the recommended ‘Accidental Loss or Damage’ cover organised by Burstows they had protection for 180 consecutive days from departure. Even without travel insurance, in this case, the insurer paid for a brand new $8,000 replacement watch.
This cover also protects you in situations like being at the beach and your ring falls off In the water and is accidentally lost. This cover is a benefit included in a good policy at no extra cost.
Using a broker
Many people either don’t know you can use a broker to assist you in obtaining the best cover for price from the market for your home and contents cover or think that it would come at an extra cost.
Brokers have access to insurers you don’t know to exist and have read and understood all policies so can provide you with expert advice and answer all of your questions. When you have a claim they also handle that for you on your behalf, so you are represented by a professional who is on your side, not the insurers. They even save customers money on their insurances with increased cover in many cases.
A broker is the person that represents you with your insurance company and is working for you, not your insurer.
Hopefully, these five important points will assist you in becoming a more informed purchaser in the future. It’s time to have confidence in your insurance and have a trusted broker to help you when you are in a time of need.
Callum Burstow is a partner at Burstow’s, part of the CIA Insurance Group. When you use Burstows, you get a free report which includes a free Cordells buildings replacement estimate to ensure your building is insured correctly, Flood mapping to help educate you on the risk this poses to your home and contents, a policy comparison if you have cover currently in place and they include a quote which is the best cover for the price on the market.
Get your free report HERE.