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Have you updated your home insurance recently?

Have you updated your home insurance recently?

Category: Home insurance

Updated: 14/04/2015
First Published: 14/04/2015

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

When was the last time you updated your home contents cover? It's easy to overlook, but if you don't keep on top of things, you could find that you've got thousands of pounds worth of items that aren't insured…

Older homeowners are underinsured

According to research from Age UK Enterprises, this is a particularly pressing concern for the older generation. Their survey found that 19% of homeowners aged 60+ have never updated their home contents insurance, with 74% being unaware that they need to update their policies to include new, big ticket items.

Of those, 47% assumed that new or particularly valuable items would automatically be covered when they renewed their contents insurance, without needing to tell their insurer about their new purchases. Even those who are aware of the need to update their insurer aren't always quick about it, and worryingly, some items are not being covered for up to 12 months at a time: although 25% of later life consumers update their policies every time they purchase a big ticket item, 51% admit to waiting until their annual policy renewal date.

This not only highlights a lack of clarity about the specifics of home insurance policies, but it also means that an estimated £3,368 worth of items are uninsured per household – could you afford to replace them if the worst were to happen?

"It's important that customers understand exactly how their home insurance policies work and that they are empowered to take full control of their finances," commented Gordon Morris, managing director of Age UK Enterprises.

"Our research shows that clear guidance on the need to update home contents insurance after purchasing expensive items or renewing a policy is not being received. Reviewing contents insurance documents and calculating how much it would cost to replace all home contents regularly can go long a way to helping homeowners make sure their personal belongings are covered at the correct value."

Make sure you're covered

If it's been a while since you updated your home insurance policy and you aren't sure what items are covered, now's the time to check! There'd be nothing worse than needing to make a claim only to find things weren't covered, because the costs could soon add up. Make sure to notify your insurer as soon as you buy anything pricey, and if you're approaching your policy's renewal date, why not see what else is available? You could well find a better deal, so compare the options using our handy insurance comparison tool, and you can then be confident that you're completely covered.

Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.