How To Choose The Right Home Insurance

When you receive your renewal notice in the post, or if you have bought your first home and are searching for home insurance (also known as ‘home cover’, or ‘house cover’), you can either simply accept your renewal quote (or the first quote you get), or you can search around to find a more competitive quote.  Renewal quotes are seldom the cheapest quotes you could find, though it’s important when comparing quotes that you don’t compromise on cover for a cheap premium.
You’ll be asked all sorts of questions when completing applications for house cover, and these are all to enable the insurers to work out how much of a risk they would be taking by giving our home insurance: are you likely to claim?  So the sorts of questions you’ll be asked will include things like:

  • what locks do you have on your doors and windows?
  • Do you have a smoke alarm?
  • Do you have a burglar alarm?
  • Do you smoke?
  • Have you made any claims against home insurance in the last five years?  If so, what were they for and how much did you claim?
  • How old is your property?
  • Are there any tall trees near the house?
  • Has your home ever suffered flooding?
  • How much excess would you be willing to pay?

Your answers to these questions will determine your premium (which is why you must answer honestly, because if you don’t then your insurer could declare the policy void when you need it most).
Once you’ve answered all the questions, you’ll be given a premium or several premiums if you’re using a comparison site, and from those you need to choose the one that offers the right cover for you.  Also check for any special offers or inducements offered by the insurance company (e.g. if you buy both buildings and contents AXA house cover and have five years’ no claims bonus, your premium will be reduced by 45%).
Make sure that the policy you choose has the right level of cover for what you need.  To work out your contents cover, you should imagine loading up all your possessions into a moving van to move house, then imagine that the van was stolen – how much would it cost to replace all your belongings?  To work out how much buildings cover you’d need, you can calculate the rebuild cost by using an online tool such as that available through the NHBC website (the market value of your house is irrelevant).
Check for any exclusions that would apply to the policy you’re thinking of buying.  If any would make it very likely that any claim you were to make would be rejected then choose a different policy, even if that means opting for a higher premium.  There is no point in having home insurance if it won’t pay out when you need it.
Grab a bargain on house insurance with AXA today!