How to reduce the cost of your home insurance
Looking to save pennies on your home insurance? Here's how you could save money on your new or existing policy.
If you want to save on your home insurance, there are a number of steps you could take to make sure you're not paying over the odds.
The cheapest home insurance might not be the best for you, but you can often save money without having to compromise on the level of cover you get.
Take a look at our money-saving tips to lowering the cost of your home insurance policy.
How do I find cheaper home insurance?
One thing you can do is shop around. Even if you’re happy with your current home insurance provider, it’s good practice to keep an eye on whether other insurers can offer you a more competitive deal.
There are a couple of specific things to bear in mind:
Don’t just automatically go with your mortgage provider
People sometimes take out home insurance with their mortgage provider. Although this can be convenient, there are usually cheaper deals available.
Consider taking out separate contents and buildings policies
Most people who own their own home opt for a combined policy, covering both buildings and contents insurance, with the same provider. This is often the easiest and cheapest option.
But you can sometimes get a better deal taking out buildings insurance with one provider and contents with another. The downside of this is that you’ll have two separate renewals to manage.
Compare home insurance quotes
Compare home insurance quotes
How do I lower the cost of my existing policy?
Even if you can’t find cheaper cover elsewhere, there might be some things you can do to lower the cost of your existing home insurance cover.
Increase your excess
Voluntarily paying a higher excess on any claims could get you a discount from your insurer.
Remember that a higher excess might mean a higher cost to you in the event of a home insurance claim.
Although it’s important not to be under-insured, don’t over-insure, either – you could end up paying too much for your premiums.
The same goes for buildings insurance. You need to insure for only the cost of rebuilding your property, which is likely to be considerably less than its purchase value.
Don’t pay for things you don’t need
For example, if you live in a top-floor flat and you don’t have a garden, paying for garden cover could be a complete waste of money.
Paying in monthly instalments might be convenient but it's almost always more expensive. Insurers tend to charge an additional admin fee on top of your premium for the benefit of paying in instalments.
Build up a no-claims discount
If you don't make any claims, you’ll usually earn a no-claims discount on your policy, which will see your annual premiums fall.
How else can I cut my home insurance costs?
Insurers usually ask questions about your property in order to work out the risk of making a claim on your home insurance policy. This affects the cost of your insurance.
There are some basic security and maintenance tips to follow that can save you money:
Install a burglar alarm
Insurers usually want to know if you have a burglar alarm, and some may offer a discount if you do.
Fit secure locks
Install a safe
Many insurers charge extra to insure high-value items. Locking expensive jewellery away in a sturdy safe could offset the extra home insurance cost.
Join the Neighbourhood Watch scheme
Not only will you have more people looking out for your home but some insurers offer a discount if you're a member.
Limit the time your home is left continuously unoccupied
Install security lighting
The more security devices you’ve installed, the more chance you have of deterring would-be burglars. Insurers are more likely to consider your home as being a lower risk.
As with security lights, this can be a good deterrent against burglars. But make sure you put up signs to warn people that they’re being filmed.
Fire-proof your home
Fitting smoke alarms throughout your home isn't just a common-sense safety tip but can also lower your home insurance premiums.
Insulate your water pipes
Frozen pipes can spell disaster, but insulating your pipes could spare you flood damage, the cost of a plumber and a higher insurance bill.
Protect your home against potential flooding
Living in a flood-risk area might make getting home insurance difficult, especially if you’ve had a past claim for flooding.
But protecting your home from flooding before it hits can reduce the chances of making a claim and could increase your chances of getting a better deal on your home insurance.
Remove tall trees
Having trees more than 10m tall next to your home can increase your premiums as they increase the risk of subsidence or heave.
By removing these trees or being choosy about what trees are planted near your home could reduce your premiums in the long run.
Keep your home ship-shape
Maintaining your home is a requirement of your home insurance policy.
When thinking about a big job, always ask yourself if you’re able to undertake the work. DIY disasters have been responsible for many insurance claims.
If a job is beyond your skill or confidence, consider hiring a tradesperson.