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Considerations for your home and contents cover

12 December 2014

Your home can often provide sanctuary from the outside world and chances are it's where you spend the vast majority of your time. Therefore, making sure it's protected from any unwanted outside influence can prove to be crucial.

If your house is filled with treasures that hold significant financial or sentimental value, having that peace of mind that they are protected is paramount.

Home and contents insurance cover is essential in ensuring protection for your house and belongings. Learning the nuances of what a good policy can offer you and the pitfalls to look out for can be crucial.

Consider the total value for which you would like the policy to cover

Many consumers will take out policies only to realise that they are over - or worse - under insured. Defining what you want covered and the value of the policy as such is a key consideration for home and contents cover.

In general, it's better to marginally overestimate what you think your goods are worth as under-doing it could lead to a whole host of issues if you have to later make a claim.

Furthermore, keeping your insurer informed about any changes in your circumstances - particularly at Christmas when you may receive or take delivery of several expensive items - is imperative if you want to be effectively covered.

Make sure your policy is thorough

There are a whole host of eventualities that may lead to your home and contents being compromised. Making sure that your policy is flexible and encompassing enough to take into account a plethora of eventualities can prove to be crucial.

Here are a few events that you should keep in mind when seeking out cover:

  • Burglary, housebreaking and theft. Relatively self explanatory, but making sure your policy covers these eventualities will protect your contents if they are stolen.
  • Fire. Covering both your home and possessions against the risk of a fire can be critical. This is a especially important consideration if you live in an area that is often effected by bushfires.
  • Earthquake, storm or rainwater. As unpredictable weather is always on the horizon in certain parts of Australia, seeking out a policy which covers you against the subsequent fallout is imperative.
  • Impact from falling trees, vehicles and aircraft. Combined with the implications that bad weather can present, having insurance that covers you against these exterior influences will only better protect your home and belongings.
  • Breakage of fixed glass. Whether as the result of accidental damage or a break-in, windows and doors are not covered by every policy, so bear this in mind when seeking cover.
  • Malicious damage. If your house is vandalised or damaged with intent in any other way, considering whether your insurance covers you in such eventualities should be a priority.

Accidental damage should also be taken into account, particularly if you have a lot of high-value consumer items. A perk of taking out a policy with such a clause is that your phones, tablets, etc could well be covered as part of your home and contents insurance. However, this will vary between policies.

Be open to an excess

Paying an agreed excess on your cover in the event of a claim can reduce the overall costs. Home and contents cover - whilst a necessity - will ideally not be claimed against that often.

If you are well aware that you live in an incredibly safe area, considering a slightly increased excess could potentially save you money in the long run.

When you're looking for home and contents insurance, knowing that your policy will cover you against a whole host of occurrences or mishaps can give added peace of mind. To find just that, consider Elders Insurance the next time you are looking to take out a policy, or when your cover is up for renewal.

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