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Home insurance FAQs

If you have any questions on home insurance, you may find the answers below.

Is home insurance the same for all property types?

No. Different types of properties need specific policies by virtue of their very nature.  Examples that come to mind include those with thatched roofs or listed buildings.

Furthermore, some properties may require different types of cover depending upon how they are being used.  For example, consider the differences between a property being used by an owner-occupier as their normal place of residence and one owned by a landlord who is using it for letting purposes and income generation.

How does home insurance differ from contents insurance?

It doesn’t – or rather it needn’t.

Home insurance typically describes risks defined under the headings of buildings and separately contents.  It’s possible that there might also be related cover provided to protect homeowners from the risks of things such as third-party liability claims.

Broadly speaking, all of these types of cover might be generally described as home insurance.

Does my property insurance cover me if I am running a business from home?

To be certain, you would need to read your policy carefully.

However, you may find that there is typically a difference between:

  • working occasionally from home when your normal place of business is elsewhere;
  • running a business from home, where it is effectively your normal place of work.

Home insurance might typically cover some of the risks associated with the former situation. The second one should be discussed with your insurance provider to check what their policy states specifically about such circumstances.

Do I need special cover if I start letting out a room in my home?

Typically – yes.

Once you start using your property for any form of income generation through rent, you may have become a landlord even if you don’t think of yourself as such.

That might mean you would need specific landlord insurance or lodger insurance for your property.

Consult your policy provider for specific advice.

Will I need to fit special locks and bolts to obtain insurance cover?

Possibly.  Some policies may have explicit requirements in that respect.

Others may not make it mandatory but might offer you incentives in the form of reductions on your premium if you take additional security measures to prevent burglary and related crimes.

Why do I need to pay excess on my insurance?

The excess is an amount you will be expected to pay towards the cost of any future agreed insurance claim.

It exists to help keep down the cost of claims each year for insurance providers, by eliminating very small claims for minor amounts of money. This, in turn, helps them to keep their prices down.

It is a perfectly normal process which is in the interests of policyholders.

Why can the price of home insurance vary so much?

There are many factors that might cause one policy to appear more or less expensive than another.  They include things such as:

  • the level and types of cover provided.  This is not necessarily the same on every policy and one that is suitable for your situation might not be so for someone else.  That is why reading the policy carefully before purchase is highly advisable;
  • how the insurer sees the risks associated with your property by virtue of things such as its type and location.  Policy providers might interpret these things very differently and that will affect their pricing.

It is always sensible to choose your home insurance policy based on the cover it provides and its suitability for your situation, rather than its headline price.

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