What is Building and Contents Insurance?
There are usually
two things that you might want to protect – the structure of your building, and
the things that you own inside it.
Although separately these are often known as a buildings policy and a
contents policy, when taken together they are usually known as home insurance
A building insurance
policy is one that protects you against damage to the fabric of your property –
such as the roof or the walls.
So if your property
is damaged by flooding or a burst pipe or by third party actions, for example,
your insurance will cover the cost of repairs and also pay for you to stay
somewhere else, if required, while your home is being returned to its former
building insurance also provides cover to protect you against those everyday
disasters such as losing your keys and requiring a locksmith to change the
If you live in a
flat, where there are other flats in the building, or you rent your home, then
it is more usual for the buildings insurance to be taken out by the owner of
the while building (sometimes, the freeholder), as the owner has the obligation
to protect the building itself. However,
the costs of that insurance will usually be passed through to the owners of the
flats as part of the service charge.
Contents insurance is a policy that covers the
belongings and possessions in your home from damage or loss.
What level of building and contents cover do I need?
Your building cover should be set at an
amount that would technically be required to rebuild your home in the event it
was destroyed. You must determine what this amount should be, as we are not
able to give you a recommendation. You
may be able to find a rebuild value from your mortgage provider, or there is a
calculator that you can use from the Association of British Insurers (http://abi.bcis.co.uk).
The level of your
contents insurance will depend on the value of your possessions and what it
would cost to replace them all in total.
Please remember that this is not just valuables and portable items, but
would also include beds, bed linen, clothing (not just the designer stuff),
tables, chairs, sofas, kitchenware and kitchen equipment etc. We would recommend that you list your
contents and then estimate a replacement cost, and it is this total that should
be the amount of cover that you need.
Many people materially underestimate the level of contents required, and
if you buy a level of contents cover that is materially less than the actual
value of contents, then we may not pay out the full amount of a claim.
What is included in the definition of a building?
insurance covers your home including domestic outbuildings, garages, domestic
fixed fuel oil tanks, drives, patios and terraces, walls, gates and fences,
swimming pools and tennis courts. Essentially, everything that makes up the
property that you have insured with us.
As a rule of thumb if you would leave it behind
when you move house then it is covered under buildings insurance
What does building insurance cover?
Our Core product and
our Core+ product each have an upper limit of £500,000 of rebuild cover while
our Premier product provides up to £1,500,000 of rebuild cover.
Our home insurance
protects you against a wide range of eventualities including damage or loss
caused by fire, floods, storms, freezing temperatures, escape of water or oil
caused by leaking pipes, and as a result of your home being burgled or
Emerald building insurance
also protects you for damage or loss caused by homophobic or hate crime.
What does contents insurance cover?
Our Core product has
a limit on overall contents cover of £50,000.
For our Core+ product this is limit is £75,000. For our Premier product, customers have the
flexibility of selecting an amount of coverage cap that they need, from £75,000
up to £150,000. This allows the customer
to pay only for the cover that they need.
insurance covers all your belongings and personal possessions, subject to
certain limits and excesses, against loss or damage caused by disasters such as
floods, storms and fires and against theft, homophobic and hate crime.
As a guide if you
would pack it up and take it with you if you moved house then it is treated as
Contents cover also
protects your cash and credit cards and other assets such as digital downloads
of music and films.
We also provide material
levels of cover for your art and memorabilia, including collections.
Can I just take out Contents Insurance rather than both Home and Contents Insurance?
Yes you can, if you
need just contents cover. If you live in a flat in a larger building, or rent
your home from a landlord, you only need contents insurance as building
insurance is provided by the company who manages the property.
If you own your home
and you also need to take out buildings insurance in order to protect the
fabric of the building, then there are advantages in buying buildings and
contents together, particularly when you need to make a claim as then there is
only one insurer that you will need to deal with.
How do I pay for my policy?
In order to keep the
overall cost to our customers as competitive as possible, we ask for payment of
the single annual premium at the beginning of the policy term. We prefer not to offer instalment plans that
can have a significant rate of interest, or instalment plans where the costs of
offering that flexibility to some customers are spread across all customers.