Understanding the Jargon of House and Contents Insurance
When looking around for the best house and contents insurance you may come across some terms you aren't familiar with. There is a multitude of different terms to understand like new for old, voluntary excess and accidental damage. These might be commonplace for a seasoned insurance expert but for newcomers to the market they may represent further confusion.
Getting to grips with these important house and contents insurance terms could help you understand what your policy covers and what each part means. If in doubt, please check with your insurer for any specific exceptions to your individual policy and what it covers.
What is New For Old?
The term, 'new for old', relates to any damaged or stolen goods covered by your house and contents insurance policy being replaced with a brand new item of equivalent quality or specification. So for instance, if you have a three-year-old television damaged by flooding, the insurer is likely to replace it with a brand new version of the equivalent model.
One common exception is household linen and clothes which can be subject to a deduction to allow for general wear and tear.
What is Accidental Damage?
Because accidents do happen, accidental damage for house and contents insurance can prove to be a valuable addition to a policy. Some common examples covered by accidental damage protection with UIA's policy include, accidentally spilling red wine on your cream carpet or slipping and accidentally putting your foot through the ceiling whilst in the loft.
What is Voluntary Excess?
Voluntary excess is the extra amount you agree to contribute when making a claim, in return for a discount on your premium. Usually, the compulsory standard excess is £100 but you can choose to pay more. It is important to note though, that should you need to make a claim, you are liable to pay the extra on top of the standard. So, if you choose a voluntary excess of £100, when making a claim following an insured event, you will pay the first £200 (standard £100 plus the £100 voluntary) with the insurer covering the rest. However, it can be a great way to reduce your premiums.
What is cover away from the home?
Whenever you come across the term, 'away from home', in a house contents insurance policy it will often be referring to personal possessions that can be taken out of the insured property. These are items like handbags, coats, laptops, bicycles, mp3 players and mobile phones. These may have a limited amount of cover, for example with UIAs web policy you can only insure up to a maximum of five bicycles. For that reason it is worth checking to see exactly what is covered.
What are High Risk Items (sometimes referred to as 'valuables')?
'High risk items' are generally seen by insurers as contents that will be expensive to replace or repair or that will increase the threat of theft. They generally include items such as jewellery, items of gold or silver or works of art. It can also relate to fragile items like china or glass antiques for example.
To discover what UIA's policy covers, get a house and contents insurance quote online.
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