You don’t need to necessarily have assets that are worth millions of Pounds in order to require high value insurance of any kind; be it home insurance, contents or otherwise.
Knowing what you need to do to ensure that your prized possessions are covered in the event of an incident, theft or damage occurring can make all the difference when it comes to being covered or not. Not being properly covered with the correct insurance classification and policy could end up costing you many thousands of Pounds.
Not Being Covered by Your Home Insurance Policy
Don’t be fooled into thinking that because you have taken out home insurance that this will cover you for high value possessions. To verify what you are covered for you should double check the terms and conditions of the insurance policy that you have taken out. However, with most home and contents insurance cover in the UK, a standard policy tends to have a limit imposed on the maximum amount that will be paid out for individual items in the event of making a claim.
If you have a high value asset, you may find that the policy amount is too low and you may therefore need to take out additional cover to ensure that your assets are properly covered, otherwise it may mean that you will not be able to make a claim at all or are only be able to receive a partial amount for a substantial claim.
What are High Value Assets?
High value items can cover a whole range of different items. These often include the following:
- Gold and other precious metals
- High spec computers
- Specialist audio equipment
- Motor fleets
- Collectible items
- Fine art
Depending on the insurance company in question you may be asked to install a series of security measures in your home in order to facilitate their cover if you have a number of high value assets. For example, you may be asked to install a wall safe in your property, or a burglar alarm if you have high value jewellery.
Are you Covered for Both Building and Contents?
High value assets can include more than just possessions, but also the building itself and some buildings may need greater or more specialist protection rather than a standard home insurance policy. This means you may have to apply for specialist insurance.
If your house is worth more than £500,000, it may be worth getting a higher-level home insurance policy, as if there is a need to cover the cost of rebuilding your home, it may not necessarily be the case that a standard policy will cover you, as most policies will cover you only up to around £500,000.
Consequently, before deciding on a particular insurance provider and policy, you should provide as many details as possible prior to deciding to go with them, as you could end up paying more for policy cover that doesn’t necessarily cover you in the event of damage to your property.
There are other reasons why you may need to take out high value buildings and contents insurance. These include the following scenarios:
- The building is particularly old
- If it is a listed building (e.g. it is a Grade I, Grade II or Grade III there may be building restrictions due to the property being of historical importance or cultural significance)
- If the property is particularly large
- If it is considered to be architecturally unusual in some way
- The building is currently undergoing building works
- If you have home contents that are insured for more than £100,000
What Does High Value Home Insurance Protect You Against?
There are number of things that high value home insurance can cover you against. Whilst the exact terms and conditions of an insurance policy’s cover will depend on the insurer that you go for, generally speaking you may expect a high value insurance policy to cover you for you the following:
- Falling trees and branches
- Lightening damage
- Storms and floods
- Attempted theft
- Collapse of radio or television apparatus
- Impact by aerial device (e.g. aircraft)
- Escape of water from heating systems
- Escape of oil from heating systems
- It may also be possible to get accidental damage cover, but you will need to check with the insurer to check their exceptions in terms of what is included in a typical policy
It is worth remembering that there are some exclusions when it comes to high value home insurance for both building and contents. Whilst some stipulations will vary depending on the insurer in question, the majority include as an exception, leaving the property unoccupied for an extended amount of time. This is typically over 30 days for most insurers, and it is vital you are honest with the insurance company about your circumstances, as you may be able to extend your cover in these scenarios.
However, if you do not inform them and then make a claim (when the property is vacant) and this is discovered, you may find the entirety of your policy is invalidated, meaning you will have to cover the costs of any items that are damaged or stolen, or if damage has been caused to your building.