A bumper selection of home-related ‘number ones’

Houses with colourful doors
Typical houses, yesterday
"Home insurance policies vary hugely in the cover they provide for gardens and their contents" Mark Greening, Gocompare.com
  • | by Kristian Dando

Every year, Gocompare.com conducts loads of surveys on matters relating to people's homes and their attitudes to where they live.

Here’s a selection of recent ‘number one’ findings, plus a top tip from Gocompare.com’s resident home insurance expert Mark Greening.

The number one planned garden job to be carried out over the next 12 months…

Planting a tree

General planting of trees, shrubs and flowers 

A whopping 42% of people surveyed earlier this year revealed that they would be planting stuff in their garden.

Mark says: “If you’ve bought exotic plants for your garden, you may find that you need to pay an additional premium to add these to your home insurance policy, or you may want to take out additional garden cover. Some policies only provide £200 worth of cover for plants - which won’t stretch very far if you have to replace mature or rare specimens.”

The number one most-stolen item from gardens…

Stolen bike

(Photo: Robotson)


Bikes are a great item for thieves – after all, they act as their own getaway vehicle. Perhaps that’s why bikes proved to be the most frequently stolen item from gardens in the UK.

Mark says: “Home insurance policies vary hugely in the cover they provide for their contents so homeowners need to carefully assess the value of their possessions and compare policy features and limits as well as prices.”

The number one home improvement…

A kitchen

(Photo: Jhiner)


The UK has had something of a culinary renaissance in the past decade or so, and maybe that’s responsible for kitchens being the most frequently carried out improvement over the past three years.

Mark says: “Whether you are planning an extension, installing a new kitchen or other major renovation, you should consult your home insurer before you start work so that you can review your sum insured and make sure your plans don’t invalidate your cover.”

The number one most-popular item found in people's sheds…

Tools in a box

(Photo: Theophilius Photograph)

Specialist tools and equipment

Britain is mad for sheds – in fact, 73% of the households Gocompare.com quizzed have one. Tools are the most frequently found item in a shed, but some people keep gym equipment, tellies and other such gubbins in theirs. Fancy that!

Mark says: “Whether you use your shed simply as a store room, a home gym or as a bolt-hole for a bit of peace and quiet away from family life, it's worth taking time to consider the value and security of your shed’s contents. Thieves love sheds because, despite containing a range of valuable contents, security is often overlooked, making them an easier target to break into than a house.”

The number one item which people would try to save in the event of a fire…

Old computer

(Photo: Taryn Marie)

Their computer

In days of yore, it might be the family photo album which people would immediately try and save in the event of a fire – now (probably because the photos are stored on it anyway) it’s the computer.

Mark says: “Photographs, whether in an album or on your computer, can’t be replaced by home insurance if they’re lost or destroyed. Cloud services now mean that your photos can be stored away from your home so that - whatever happens to your own hardware - you have a virtual back-up. It’s worth investigating these services if all of your photos are kept on your home computer and you’d have no way of recovering them if you lost it through fire, flood, theft or any other mishap.”