Top tips for getting cheaper home insurance
Whether you’re looking for a new home insurance policy or just hoping to change your current plan, there are plenty of ways you can save money.
This guide will help you find cheaper home insurance and give you ideas on how to lower the cost of your existing policy. We take a look at changes you can make to your current policy, your payment plan, and modifications you can make to your home for greater safety and security, all of which keep your premiums down.
In This Guide:
- Changing your insurance cover
- Change how you pay
- Upping your security
- Preventing damage to your home
Changing your insurance cover
Here are a few ideas for changes you can make to your home insurance policy that will help you save money.
Buildings and Contents: If you currently pay for your contents and building cover separately, you can sometimes save money by combining them, or at least by purchasing both from the same provider. This will also make your life easier, as you only have to contact one company. However, as always with insurance, it’s about finding the deal that’s right for you. When balancing cost and cover, you may find that purchasing policies from separate providers is a better option.
Over-Insuring: Make sure you’re only covered for the actual value of your property and possessions. You should try and accurately estimate the value of your contents and the rebuild value of your home. If you don’t, you may be paying premiums that are too high! On this note, you may also be paying extra for services you don’t need, for example cover for legal expenses, increased garden or bike cover. Some policies cover these as standard, but if you’re paying extra for them, work out whether they’re essential.
Compare Policies: As with any insurance policy, you should always shop around and compare the best deals to find the one that suits you. This is always a playoff between cost and cover, you can use our free home insurance comparison tool to help you get started.
Change how you pay
As well as making changes to your policy itself, you can also save money by changing how you pay for it.
Upping your Voluntary Excess: This is different from the compulsory excess that your insurer will insist that you pay (you cannot make changes to that). A voluntary excess is an extra payment that you can choose to make on top of your compulsory excess. A higher excess will often get you a discount from your insurance provider, but it’s worth remembering that this will also mean paying more in the event of a claim.
Annual Payments: Whilst it might seem daunting having to pay your whole years’ worth of insurance upfront, it will almost always save you money. Monthly instalments come with added interest as well as an admin fee. Depending on the insurer, the interest on monthly payments can be up to 10% APR, which is completely avoided by paying annually.
Paying for Losses Yourself: In the event of an accident or other incident that you may claim for, it’s often a good idea to have a think about whether it’s really worth it. If the cost is not too high you may well save money paying for it yourself. It will also preserve your no claims bonus which can save you a lot of money in the long run.
Upping your security
Increasing the security of your home is a sure-fire way to save money on your home insurance, and there are plenty of ways to go about doing this.
- Get the right locks: Specific locks are required by insurance providers and some insurers will even offer you a discount if you install certain types. For more information, read our article ‘Best Types of Lock to Keep Your Home Secure’. You can also get expert advice on the kinds of locks you need from a locksmith.
- Join a neighbourhood watch scheme: This is always a good plan for your home security, and some insurers will offer you a discount to your premiums of up to 5%. If you don’t have one available, make friends with your neighbours.
- CCTV: This is a more extreme option, but it can be useful if you’re very worried about crime in your area. Just watch out for legal restrictions, for example signs to warn people, and what the cameras are allowed to record.
- Other security measures: Burglar alarms, security lights, door chains and window locks are just some of the security options for your home. There are even some security systems that can alert the police when tripped.
Preventing damage to your home
There are plenty of measures you can take to prevent damage to your home and decrease the chance of having to make a claim and lose your no claims bonus.
Smoke alarms: Make sure smoke alarms are fitted and that you check them regularly. Fires can be caused by a wide range of issues, for example faulty electrics or oven malfunctions, and are a common cause of damage and insurance claims.
Insulation: Fitting insulation around your water pipes can stop water damage to your property should they burst. This is another very common home insurance claim.
Home Improvements: If you want to make some changes to your home, you should think carefully about whether you need to pay a professional. Damage caused by people attempting DIY they are not prepared for is a very common source of insurance claims. However, you don’t need shy away from general maintenance, for example gutter clearing. These jobs aren’t sure to stop you needing to make claims, but they will certainly help prevent causing damage to your home.