1) You should look for the “Act of God” clause in your policy.
When people talk about an “Act of God”, what they are most likely referring to are freak weather events or unpredictable natural disasters. And whilst it’s correct that natural disasters and other similar occurrences aren’t insured as a “standard risk”, you are unlikely to actually find an “Act of God” clause in your policy. That’s because what could or could not be considered an act of God is vague to say the least; how does one define or distinguish an act of God? The official word from the Association of British Insurers is that: “All insurance policies should clearly outline what you are covered for and state any exclusions. We are not aware of any new insurance policies sold that include so-called ‘Act of God’ clauses.”
2) You should always overvalue your claim.
Many believe that you should overvalue your claim, to compensate for how much your insurer will “undervalue” your claim. This often doesn’t make any sense for policies in which you will be paying a higher premium for the higher value. Furthermore, if you are found to be deliberately misleading your insurer, they could reject your claim altogether. You should always value your claim as accurately as possible.
3) Pet damage is never covered.
There is some confusion between what pet damage actually is. Pet damage (which is not typically covered by your home insurance) includes things like scratch marks and bite marks. But if your pet knocks over a bottle of wine from the coffee table, staining your carpet and upholstery, then this is considered accidental damage and may be covered by your home insurance.
4) Your home is insured at its market value.
Your home should be insured based on the cost of reconstruction – not including the cost of the land that you have already paid for, but rather the physical structure of the building. Many people guess that the total buildings value must be the value of the property when it was purchased, and are therefore overvaluing their home.
5) You don’t need insurance if you work from home.
A number of things can go wrong even if you do work from home, that can leave you at risk if you don’t have adequate business insurance. Even if your clients or customers don’t visit you at your place of work, you may instead visit them. Or, whilst working, you may have to come into contact with the general public. Public liability insurance protects you against any injuries or damage to property that you may accidentally cause.
6) The cheapest policy is always the best.
Not all policies are made equal. Comparing quotes online and simply choosing the cheapest, assuming that all have identical coverage, can be a costly mistake. The cheapest option may have significantly less coverage than the one with a slightly higher premium, leaving you vulnerable to particular risks. You should always compare policies like-for-like.
7) Accidental damage is standard cover.
This is simply not true. In most home insurance policies, you can expect to pay extra for this additional cover. However, at Ashburnham, our landlord insurance covers both accidental damage and malicious damage as standard at no extra cost!
8) Properties with subsidence are impossible to insure.
Most home insurance policies will cover houses with a history of subsidence, but this may affect your premium.
9) Landlord’s contents insurance will also cover tenants.
Landlord’s contents insurance will only cover the contents belonging to the landlord, such as furniture and appliances that are rented with the property. Tenants are responsible for arranging their own contents insurance to cover their own personal items and furniture that were not included with the property.
10) You can’t have a conversation with an insurance broker.
At Ashburnham Insurance Services, we pride ourselves on being able to have a real conversation with our customers. Whether our local customers want to pop into our office for a face-to-face chat, or whether our national customers want to call us for free on 0800 1696137, we are always happy to discuss with you what your options are based on your particular requirements. Sometimes it can take some of the stress off by having a real conversation with an experienced and knowledgeable insurance broker, rather than clicking a bunch of inanimate buttons on a website.