Fifty shades of Home Insurance

Image of woman shushing
With her annual home and contents cover sorted, Tina slipped into something more comfortable
"Nothing stirs the blood of insurance lovers quite like a hefty excess"
  • | by Kristian Dando

Do you know what gets us at Covered mag HQ all a-fluster? Home insurance.

That’s right. We’re positively cock-a-hoop about all things to do with buildings and contents cover. In fact, we just can’t get enough of it.

And with Valentine’s Day (that most amorous of saintly dates) just around the corner, there’s very little we’d rather be doing than helping you bone up on your home insurance knowledge.

So, run that bath, stick some slow jams on your hi-fi and brace yourself for a hot salvo of sizzling buildings and contents action…

Amply covered?

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There’s nothing much worse than coming up short when it really matters.

So, if your contents policy doesn’t deliver the goods because you’ve underestimated the worth of your valuables, it can be deeply frustrating.

“Think of your contents as what would come out of your house if you picked it up and gave it a vigorous shaking,” cooed Ben Wilson, home insurance expert at “It might seem laborious, but spend some time very carefully examining your valuables so you aren’t left disappointed.”

Get the neighbours involved

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Joining a Neighbourhood Watch scheme is an ace way of getting to know your neighbours a little more intimately… and it could save you money on your insurance to boot.

Some red-hot research carried out by found that 33% of insurance companies offer a discount for being a member of a scheme.

“Joining a Neighbourhood Watch scheme shows a willingness by homeowners to go above and beyond to protect their home and community, something insurers look upon favourably when assessing the risk you pose,” winked Wilson.

So, swing on by to your next local meeting, make yourself known and find out how you can join in.

Temperature’s rising

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Back in the old days it was pretty easy to crank the heat up on a cold winter’s night. But now, they don't respond to your efforts to get them going quite as readily as they once did. And to be fair, they've seen better days. Might it be time to splash out on a new one?

Boiler cover – well, what did you think we were on about? – is something of a contentious issue, which you can read much more about here. But did you know that lots of home insurance policies can include home emergency cover for when you’re in really urgent need of assistance? Now THAT’S saucy.

But remember, a regular seeing-to is just as important to avoid a dangerous build-up of pressure and to keep those pipes flowing. "Boilers are one of the most expensive items in your home to replace or repair, but many people don't give them a thought until they let them down," purred Jeremy Cryer, energy expert at "We strongly recommend that people have their system checked on an annual basis as this helps ensure that it's running safely and efficiently.”

Bigger is (sometimes) better

Image of a woman gasping at szieable excess

Nothing stirs the blood of insurance lovers quite like a hefty excess.

Plumping for a sizeable one may leave you exposed if you need to make a claim, but might result in a cheaper annual premium.

On the other hand, opting for a more modest one could make your annual premium a little less manageable… but you could be the one wearing a satisfied smirk in the event of having to make a claim.

Get around

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You’ve been with the same one for a long time now. Years, in fact.

But lately, others have been catching your eye. Going elsewhere hasn’t really crossed your mind before… but hey, what’s stopping you checking out what’s on offer?

We are, of course, talking about home insurance, where fidelity is rarely rewarded.

So, if you’ve had an eye-wateringly large premium come through your letterbox, you could end up getting a lot more bang for your buck elsewhere. And what better place to look for a quick, easy hook-up with a new insurer than with

What hot home insurance tips do YOU have this Valentine’s Day? Let us know on Twitter or Facebook