Moving house insurance makes sure your possessions are protected in transit to your new home. Everyone is well aware of the enormous stress of moving home and the final step of emptying your old place full of memories into the back of a van can be a final mental tipping point.
But a physical tipping point is definitely not what you want for your possessions. Nevertheless accidents do happen. But with a lifetime of contents packed into a lorry or a removal company how can you get cover for the thousands of pounds of items there – from furniture to televisions and collections?
Home insurance will mostly cover your contents only when they are in the home, apart from often a few valuables on your person. What do you do then if £2000 of dining room furniture ends up smashed?
Some 42% of insurers don’t cover your contents when you’re moving home, according to MoneySupermarket, while 25% of people moved with no home insurance at all.
Insurance for removals (or as Americans say, insurance for removal) can help on that front. With Emerald Life our home insurance includes cover for moving house. We cover theft and damage to your contents under the same circumstances listed in our policy wording while they are being permanently removed from your home to any other private property you are going to live in inside the UK, provided that the household removal is conducted by a professional company. That includes 72 hours of storage.
We also offer within our insurance optional accidental damage cover for contents which extends that cover to include acts like dropping items. This includes lots of high value items like electricals but note that delicate ceramics are excluded, along with cash and bicycles.
If you already have a home insurance policy with another provider then you should check your policy to see if removals insurance is included. Like Emerald, plenty of insurers do provide cover for moving home under contents insurance.
If your policy does not include this under contents insurance then you may want to consider switching insurers to one that does or you can look at separate removals insurance that covers just the period of the move itself.
Most insurance policies will require you to use a professional removal company for removal insurance cover. That need for a professional removals company means you can’t do your own move or ask a friend with a van. This is to protect against fraud and make sure your possessions are in the most capable hands they can be. Half of removals are DIY moves so it is important to understand this point and use a removal company if you want to make sure your contents are insured on their way to your new home.
On the other hand, professional removal companies may also offer their own insurance cover for the removal of your contents. In this case you should find out exactly what is covered and for how much.
While many professional removal companies have their own removals insurance cover, this cover is often surprisingly low and so you may find that you can only claim a small amount towards your £2000 TV replacement compared to if you had home insurance that covered moving houses.
Make sure to consider the value of contents you are moving – £14,000 is the average amount. You may also want to consider having certain items professionally valued before removal.
Once you know the value of the contents you are moving you should be able to compare cover and make a more informed choice about whether to go with the options from your removals company or a full home and contents insurance policy with removals covered like Emerald Life.
Arranging Buildings Insurance On Exchange
If you are moving house then it is also important to insure your buildings correctly. You become responsible for the property you are buying when you exchange contracts and so it is wise to have an active buildings policy in place for that time.
If you wait until you have moved in then anything that happens to the building is your responsibility. Imagine if it burned down or flooded before you complete- in both situations the property would still be your problem, as you would still be obliged to go through with the property purchase.
Of course this can seem a pain with all the stress of moving having dealt with so many other parties of solicitors, estate agents and lenders, but a good insurer like Emerald Life can help ease you through the process of getting insured quickly and easily.
If you are buying with a mortgage then it is very likely your lender will require adequate buildings insurance on exchange in order to lend to you.
One pitfall you may encounter is if you are moving to a new build property then your postcode may not work in a lot of insurers’ systems. At Emerald Life we have a simple process for correcting these issues so even if the computer says no, there’s a good chance our friendly staff will say yes.
Can I Move My Home Insurance?
Generally house insurance providers are very keen to keep loyal customers. If you are moving house most should be willing to work with you to change your policy.
How this is carried out is another matter. They may cancel your existing policy so as to set up a new one, in which case it will depend on the insurer what refund you get from the old policy. At Emerald Life we offer a pro-rata refund on 12 month policies which are calculated down to the day – meaning you get a refund for every day remianing on the policy providing you haven’t claimed. And we charge NO admin fees.
On the other hand it may be possible to change your existing policy through what is called a mid-term adjustment in which case you may have to pay an additional fee if the premium for the new property details comes out higher. On the other hand the new property may be lower risk and result in a partial refund.
Either way, your insurer should be willing to work with you on this. In some circumstances an insurer may be unwilling to continue covering you if the new property faces certain risks – such as subsidence or high flood risk. In these cases you should see about a refund and look elsewhere.
If you are awaiting sale on your property and it is unoccupied for more than 30 days you should also inform your insurer. Again, this might be a dealbreaker for your insurer if they don’t offer unoccupied house insurance. At Emerald Life we can help with this through our popular unoccupied home insurance, which again can be cancelled for a pro-rata refund when the property sells if you buy a 12 month policy and haven’t claimed.