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Don't waste money by doubling up on insurance

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From your mobile phone to household appliances, we look at what insurance you really need, and how you could save money.

Insurance button on keyboard 
Covering the contents of your new fridge-freezer or insuring your mobile phone may sound like a good idea.

But make sure you’re not paying twice for the same protection. 

We look at some of the most common types of insurance you may be offered when you make a new purchase, and see which items may already be covered under your home insurance.

Valuables 

Many jewellers offer their own insurance, which protects against loss, theft or damage.

However, watches, rings, bracelets and the like may already be covered under your home policy.

Check you’ve got cover for personal possessions and, if you’re planning to take items outside your home, make sure you have “away from home” cover too.

There's usually a maximum amount that your insurer will pay out for an individual item and each policy will vary.

So check with your insurance provider to make sure you have adequate cover in place, particularly if you keep expensive jewellery.

Mobile phones 

Instead of buying mobile phone insurance from your provider, you can save money by including mobile cover on your contents insurance too.

Providers such as LV= offer cover up to £1,500 for mobile phones under the personal possessions section.

Some stand-alone mobile policies will cover the cost of any calls made if your phone is stolen.

While not all household insurers offer this, Halifax does include such cover on its mobile phone add-on for home contents policies. 

Household appliances 

washing machine

You can easily shell out around a third again of the purchase price of white goods when it comes to insurance and extended warranties.

These in-store policies cover breakdown once any manufacturer’s guarantee ends and usually accidental damage cover, too.

Aside from the fact that breakage and damage is likely to be covered on your household policy, it’s worth knowing that, under consumer law, if the appliance breaks down or fails due to an inherent fault, you can expect a replacement up to six years after purchase.

Freezer contents 

Buy a new fridge-freezer and the additional insurance covers the cost of any spoiled food if it breaks down.

In most cases this is around £300 whereas a household policy with Legal & General, for example, automatically includes freezer contents cover as standard up to a £1,000 limit.

Both Halifax and Nationwide pay out to a maximum of £500. 

The advantage of stand-alone insurance policies can be that you’re not liable for a large excess in the event of making a claim.

However, when it comes to the long-term expense, in most cases it’s far more cost-effective to have cover for all your valuables and household belongings under one policy. 

Insurance for your pipework 

When it comes to selling insurance, even the water companies are keen to cash in: you can’t have missed those official-looking letters from your water provider warning about the potentially sky-high cost of repairs for your supply pipe.

This pipe is the one bringing water from your property boundary into your home and for around £30 a year you can insure against the cost of any repairs.

Yet according to water regulator Ofwat, while this pipe is your responsibility, most water companies will in fact offer a limited number of free repairs. So check the small print before you throw your money away.

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