How to compare home insurance
How to ensure you're getting the cheapest home insurance
Want to find out how you can really save pounds on your home insurance? Then read our insider’s guide – it’s packed full of tips on saving money.
From opting for a higher voluntary excess to ways you can make yourself look more attractive to insurers, our top money saving tips will really give you the edge.
Finding the cheapest home insurance policy is within your grasp. Just don’t let anyone know we told you…
Even similar types of home insurance policies can vary wildly in price, so compare as many policies as you can.
The reason is simple: each insurer has its own criteria to set the price of premiums. For one insurer, your postcode may be bad news as it’s associated with a history of claims as long as your arm. However, a different insurer may have a good experience with your postcode, so their quote is much easier on your wallet.
Use an online home insurance comparison site - like the one right here, compare themarket .com – to help you track down our best deals. Just input your details, answer a few quick questions and you can see all home insurance policies from our panel of providers side-by-side.
One word of caution: make sure you compare like with like. For example ‘new-for-old-cover’ (where you get a brand new telly rather than just the amount the old one was worth) can’t really be compared fairly with ‘indemnity cover’ which is cheaper, but will only pay the current value of your possessions.
2. Only get the insurance you need
Got a separate insurance policy for your smartphone or your bicycle? You could be doubling up on your cover – and it won’t benefit you one bit. You can’t claim twice for something, as profiting on claims is not allowed.
So before you get your new home insurance policy, check you’re not covered already (for example, for taking your mobile out of the house) before you add any extra expense to your policy.
Conversely, check your home insurance policy before being tempted to buy additional cover for hardware like your boiler. Sometimes this can be included as standard in a home insurance policy.
3. Don’t overpay on your buildings insurance
Yes, if you have a mortgage your provider may insist you have buildings insurance in place, but you don’t need to get the insurance direct from your mortgage provider.
With so much else going on when you’re buying a property, it’s tempting just to take the first policy on offer, but shopping around could make it heaps cheaper.
Another common mistake people make with buildings insurance is on
the ‘sum insured’; the amount it would cost to rebuild your house should a freak tornado turn your semi to rubble for example.
This will be less than your home’s market value – particularly if you live in a desirable area, where the value comes more from the location than the fabric of the building.
Instead, the sum insured should be the ‘rebuild value’, so you’re only taking into account things like builder’s fees and the cost of the materials (rather than the fact you live next door to the UK’s top-rated primary school).
Both buildings and contents policies come with a compulsory excess – the amount you have to contribute towards any claim you make.
Then there’s a voluntary excess; an amount you set yourself. In short, the more you’re willing to pay as a voluntary excess towards any claim, the cheaper your insurance premium will be.
But before you increase your excess to save on your premium, think about whether you really could afford the total excess in the event of making a claim.
Insurers take into account your claims history when working out your premium. Having no previous claims is looked on favourably – and will tend to reduce your premiums.
Insurance companies love people who are less likely to make a claim. So turn yourself into one of these fine, upstanding citizens by making your home as safe as, well, houses.
Fit approved locks on all your windows and doors (and remember to use them). Failing to lock your windows could invalidate your claim.
Fit an approved alarm. While these will likely deter burglars, they could help to reduce your premiums, but remember to keep yours maintained.
So, take special precautions – and tell your insurer about these. Keep your jewels in a safe? Make sure you let your insurance provider know!
Follow these tips and you will hopefully see your premiums fall.
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