It’s the great Australian dream, and one of the most significant investments in one’s lifetime – buying a home. If you’re a homeowner or investor, one thing to consider is protecting your property and assets from the unforeseen. That’s where home and contents insurance comes in. This type of cover provides financial protection against losses, damage or outright destruction of your home and what’s inside it.
The scope of your policy varies depending on your insurer and level of cover. The table below lists some common inclusions under home and contents insurance.
|What can be covered in home insurance?||What can be covered in contents insurance?|
|Your private residential building||Furniture and furnishings|
|Outbuildings (i.e. garages, carports, sheds, etc.)||Computers and electrical appliances|
|Permanent fixtures (i.e. built-in wardrobes, in-ground swimming pools, etc.)||Clothing, personal effects and valuables (i.e. jewellery, artwork, etc.)|
|Fixed floor coverings (i.e. tiles, carpet, timber, etc.)||Fixed or unfixed carpets and rugs|
|Verandas, pergolas, permanent decking and gazebos||Fixtures or fittings you own (i.e. dishwashers, ovens, etc.) that are not legally part of the home|
|Fixtures and fittings connected to gas, electrical, plumbing and sewerage services||Internal window coverings and curtains|
|Permanently fixed awnings, blinds and shutters||Portable and above-ground swimming pools or portable spas and accessories|
|Walls, gates and fences used for domestic purposes||Tools, gardening equipment (i.e. lawnmowers, power saws, etc.) and pot plants|
For limits, terms, conditions, inclusions and exclusions, please read your individual policy’s Product Disclosure Statement (PDS).
Most home and contents insurance policies come with standard exclusions. Ultimately, what you will be covered and not covered for will depend on your insurer and policy. The table below lists some common exclusions of home and contents insurance:
|What’s commonly not covered in home and contents insurance?|
|Corrosion, depreciation and wear or tear of your property or belongings|
|Loss or damage to your home if it was left vacant for an extended period of time or unsecured|
|Damage or loss to your home and contents resulting from:|
|Damage or loss caused by actions of the sea (i.e. king tides, storm surge etc.)|
|Damage or loss caused by landslide or subsidence unless it was as a direct result of a:|
|Damage or loss caused by:|
|Loss or damage caused by any illegal activity you may be involved in|
The cost of your home and contents insurance will vary depending on your insurer and level of cover, along with some other factors, including:
If you want to get a better idea of how much it would cost to insure your home and contents, you can compare quotes from a range of insurers with our free comparison tool. Refine your quote to find policies with the right inclusions and features for your home and budget in just minutes.
Home insurance provides a financial ‘safety net’ that can help cover the costs of repairing or rebuilding your home if it’s damaged by events outside of your control like vandalism or natural disasters.
When deciding on how much to insure your house for, you should first start by estimating how much it would cost to rebuild your home in today’s economy by speaking to a professional in property appraisals. Here are a few factors to take into account:
When calculating the value of your home, remember to exclude the land value.
Total replacement cover provides complete financial protection for costs to restore your home to its original condition before the event that caused the damage.
Sum-insured cover reimburses you for losses or damages to your home up to a set limit (i.e. your sum insured). It’s important to make sure that you get this value right. Why? Because if repair costs balloon and you’ve undervalued your home, you will be out of pocket in the event of a claim.
It’s important to note that most insurers only offer ‘sum insured’ cover, so it may be difficult to find ‘total replacement’ cover. It’s wise to seek professional advice when calculating your sum-insured value as building costs may be impacted by different factors.
Big or small, all the objects inside your home are valuable. But, what would you do if they were stolen, damaged or destroyed? That’s what contents insurance is for: to shoulder those repair or replacing costs.
If you’re unsure about how much you should insure contents for, start by working out what it would cost to replace all your belongings at their current value. Do an annual inventory of every room in your home and make a list of all the items you have, plus their estimated replacement costs.
Your contents can consist of: