Part One - Protecting Your Home
If your home is located in a high flood risk area then not only will you
want to have home insurance
cover but you will also want to ensure that you
have the right cover in place. Buying home insurance can be confusing so
here at Flood Assist we've produced a guide to help.
Part 1 of our Flood Insurance Guide help's you understand the typical types
of insurance cover that you can buy to protect your home and how much cover
you actually need.
Insurance cover for your home
Will my insurance automatically cover me for flooding?
Flood cover is something that is typically included in all home insurance
policies. However, if your property is in a high flood risk area or has
previously been flooded then it's best to check that you are definitely
covered for flooding.
If your policy is included in the Flood Re scheme you will be covered for
flooding. If your property is not eligible for Flood Re
and is in a very
high flood risk area you may have flood cover excluded from your policy.
This however should be brought to your attention when you take your
insurance policy out.
What type of home insurance policy do I need?
When buying insurance for your home you should consider what you need or
want to protect. There is no legal requirement to insure your home
however it is likely to be your largest financial asset and as such you should
consider protecting it.
There are 2 main types of insurance policy that you can purchase to protect
your home and its contents:
1. Buildings insurance
This is insurance for the building itself. If you have a mortgage on your
home, it will be a condition of your mortgage that you insure your home,
including for flooding.
Your policy wording will contain a definition of what your insurer includes
as a building, this can be found in your policy wording. Typically,
buildings are defined as: your actual home, its fixtures and fittings,
garden walls, gates, paths, patio's, driveways, oil/gas tanks, tennis
courts, decking, patio's garages, outbuildings, sheds, greenhouses,
summerhouses. Each insurers definition of buildings varies so It's important that you
check your policy wording so that you know what is and what is not
2. Contents insurance
This is insurance for the contents of your home. The simplest way to think
about contents is it being the items that you can remove from your home; if
you were moving house it would be the items that you would take with you
when you move.
As with buildings insurance your policy wording will contain a definition
of contents. Contents typically includes items such as: household goods,
personal effects, frozen foods, valuables, money and business equipment.
Contents insurance will only cover items that either you of your family own
or are legally responsible for.
Each insurers definition of contents varies so it's important that you
check your policy wording so you know what is and what is not included
Some insurers or brokers may offer what they call a combined home insurance
policy, this is a policy that cover buildings and contents under one
New for old or Indemnity cover - what should I buy?
The type of cover you buy will determine how your insurer will settle any
claim that you make.
New for old cover - your insurer will either pay you for the full cost
of repairing damaged items, or replacing them with equivalent new items
if they're stolen or damaged beyond repair. This is the most common
type of cover and way insurers settle claims.
Indemnity cover - your insurer will make a deduction for depreciation,
wear and tear when they pay your claim. For example: if you're your
home floods and your sofa needs to be replaced at a cost of £500, your
insurer will only pay you what your old sofa would currently have been
worth. An indemnity based policy may well be cheaper to buy but it can
leave you out of pocket if you make a claim.
How much should I insure my home for?
Insuring your buildings
When calculating out how much cover you need for your buildings it's
important to remember that you need to insurer your property for the cost
of rebuilding your home and not its
or the price someone would pay if they bought your home as this would
include the value of the land your home is on as well.
If you are unsure of what your home will cost to rebuild, there are many
online guides available to help you calculate this. The Association of
British Insurers offers a guide on their website: https://abi.bcis.co.uk/
If you have recently purchased your home and had a survey completed on your
property your survey will include a rebuild cost.
If you have recently extended your home make sure you also increase your
buildings sum insured to take this in to account.
Insuring your contents
When calculating how much cover you need for the contents of your home the
amount of cover you need should be for the total value of all your items.
It may help to think about this as the value of the items you would take
with you if you moved house including your carpets and curtains or what you
would have to replace all your items if your home was completely gutted by
a fire. Don't forget to include items in outbuildings, garden offices,
sheds and garages in your estimates too.
As well as asking you for the total value of your contents your insurer
will also ask you to confirm additional amounts of cover for the following:
a. Specified items (Items that exceed a certain amount)
All contents insurance policies include a maximum amount you can claim for
a single item. If you have one or more items that exceed this amount then
you will need to have these items individually insured and listed in your
insurance policy. For example, if your policy has a single item limit of
£1,500 and you have a diamond ring valued at £2,000 and you want to insure
the ring then you need to tell your insurance provider to include this in
in your insurance policy.
b. High-value/risk items
Your insurance provider should ask you what cover you would need for high
risk items. These are items that could easily be stolen from your home such
as antiques, laptops, jewelry, watches, TV's and artwork. The amount of
cover you need is the total value of all your high-risk items. You do not
need to include items that you have insured as specified items in this
amount as they will already be covered.
Contents insurance covers you for items that are usually keep at your home
it doesn't cover your items when they are not at your home that may become
lost, damaged or stolen. If you want cover for items when you are away from
your home then you will need to include Personal Possessions cover in your
household insurance policy. Typical example of items that you may want to
insurer away from your home are: laptops, cameras and jewellery.
Personal Possessions covers your whole family that live at the insured
address so to work out how much cover you need you must add up the total
value of all the items that you and your family may take outside the home
at any one time. The amount you cover your personal possessions for should
be also included in your overall contents sum insured as these items will
also need insuring when they are at your home as well.
Personal possessions cover will cover you in the location(s) stated in in
your policy wording (often referred to as your territorial limits). This is
generally either Europe or Worldwide, check your policy wording as insurers
will list what countries they will offer cover in.
Your policy will also include a time limit that your insurer will cover
your personal posessions for, generally this is set at a maximum number of
days in any one year, typically either 30 or 60 days, again check your
policy wording as cover does vary.
of our insurance guide focuses on the cover your insurance policy provides
you with, focusing on what cover features, conditions and exclusions people
living in high flood risk areas should be aware of
If you have a question about insurance that you'd like to know the answer
too, email at firstname.lastname@example.org