Home buildings insurance offers protection for your building in the event of a fire or other damage. Getting the right policy can mean the difference between a quick return to normality and months of hardship.
How much should I insure my buildings for?
As with all insurance products, you should be as accurate as possible in assessing the value of what you are insuring. If you had to claim, what could it cost to return your home (including fittings and fixtures included) to its current state? While you want to keep down the cost by not overvaluing the cost of potential damage, it is unimaginable to find that you have paid for building insurance believing you are protected only to find that your claim is rejected due to insufficient cover for the repairs that your home requires. Therefore the cost of your building insurance should not be based on the market value of your home, but should be set as a worst case scenario cost, whereby your home would require demolition and completely rebuilt. This figure should factor all costs that this would require, including; trades people, builders and architects costs.
While this is a difficult task, it is reassuring to learn that the cost of a complete rebuild is often lower than the market value of the home. Also, while the whole process sounds like an extremely overwhelming one, it is simplified if you choose to hire a surveyor through the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) who can accurately determine the value of your home and the rebuild costs.
How to get the best buildings cover
The best cover will always be the one which offers a great cover which covers a wide range of circumstance which could lead to a claim being required, and does so at a price that is affordable to you. However, there are other key elements of a policy that you should look out for when considering which provider you should use.
You should be sure to check that any other buildings that are outside of the home and the garden are also covered by the quote you receive, as not all policies will include this as a feature of their policy.
Increasing the safety features in your home are always a good way to reduce the costs of insuring the property. Adding smoke alarms and fire extinguishers should help to reduce the cost of your policy. These are not only a decent way to keep down the cost, but are also a good idea generally to protect yourself and others in your home.
It may seem like slightly more trouble not to simply accept the automatic renewal offer that your current provider has proposed, but if you’re looking to secure the best deal you should be comparing price to ensure that the cover you receive represents value for money.
Many insurers, although not all, will offer alternative accommodation as part of the policy you receive, should you find that your home is left uninhabitable due to a circumstance covered through your agreement. This can be an invaluable service were you unable to find an adequate place while your property is being repaired.
What to remember when buying buildings insurance...
While some circumstances are entirely unavoidable and are outside of your control, insurers do take a more approving view upon those who have built up a no claims over a particular length of time. This may significantly decrease the price you pay for your policy.
Each insurer will vary on what specifically is covered through their policy, therefore it is vital to read the small print and terms and conditions of their insurance quote to ensure you are covered for all eventualities. Most policies will generally cover most natural disasters and adverse weather conditions such as damage caused by; lightning, earthquakes, extreme winds, storms and flooding etc. Many policies will also cover you in the event of fire and theft, as well as moving objects (should your home be damaged by a vehicle) and cover should your home be subject to riots and vandalism.
There are various things you can do to keep the costs down for your policy, you must be sure that you are being sensible with your finances and hunting down a good deal. You should be careful to not compromise the quality of the insurance you receive as a result of trying to get a cheaper rate. There is no better way to guarantee you get the best deal for you than through making use of home insurance comparison tables such as the one featured above.