Home Insurance 2

Try not to make a claim! This sounds a bit ridiculous, but even small claims might increase your premiums (possibly to more than the item was worth), ask your insurance company what the impact of a claim might be before you start the formal process.

Make sure you know what your excess is – the amount you have to pay before you claim – you may be able to reduce your premium by having a higher excess.

A claim is less likely if you can work on prevention – taking time and care to maintain your property could make all the difference. Make sure you regularly check your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms, check any older electrical appliances, listen to recall notices, have your boiler serviced annually and make sure you put out those beautiful candles…

Make sure you are clear about any specifications in your policy – for example we can’t leave keys in the locks or our policy will be invalid. We also had to buy an intruder alarm – this was £177, but we saved £600!

Aviva Insurers have listed their most common claims, some of which could be reduced with a bit of preventative thinking:

  1. Escaping water – make sure your pipes are lagged for the cold weather, or keep your heating on a low setting when you are away.
  2. Storm – take an annual look at any loose tiles, chimney breast and clear out the gutters – what lovely Summer jobs!
  3. Accidental damage – Statistically younger people are far more likely to make a claim for their mobile phone, tablet or computer. Buying a hard cover for a mobile might be a better investment than an insurance claim…
  4. Theft – don’t leave items on show in cars, bags and at school (!), keep your front door locked; especially if you are in the garden in the Summer, if it’s precious to you treat it that way x
  5. Fire – unplug items when not in use, don’t leave everything on standby (this will also save you money), check your smoke alarms regularly. You can ask your local Fire Prevention Officer to come and check your home and suggest any changes to keep the risk of fire low. And stop frying chips in that deep pan…
  6. Subsidence – mmm, this is a bit beyond normal maintenance but if you have any suspicions get them checked out as you might catch the problem before it gets ‘epic’…
  7. Flood – again this may be out of your control, but the damage is likely to be extensive, be very clear what your policy does and does not cover.
  8. Malicious damage – claims for this jump 160% over the week of Hallowe’en!
  9. Impact damage – If this should happen to your property once it’s worth seeing if there is a preventative measure to stop it happening again, especially if you live on a dangerous bend…
  10. Freeze – when bad weather hits, do a check of your home and think about anything you can do to help it survive the storm.

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