Contents insurance is part of your home insurance that covers all the belongings you keep at your property.
It includes anything that isn’t fixed down permanently - so as well as your clothes, electricals, personal effects and other possessions, it’s things like free-standing fridges and washing machines, rugs and curtains.
You can buy a contents-only policy or get buildings and contents insurance together in one home insurance policy.
If you’re a tenant, buildings insurance isn’t your responsibility, but you might want a contents insurance policy to protect your own belongings.
Think about how much all your possessions are worth. If you couldn’t afford to replace them, it’s worth getting contents insurance.
Contents insurance covers your belongings against theft, damage or loss. It can protect items like:
You’ll be covered a standard against theft and losses from things like fires, floods and weather damage.
You probably won’t be covered as standard for accidental damage or for your possessions when you take them away from home - so check your cover and buy these features as optional extras if you need them.
It depends on the value of your possessions.
In May 2019, the average price paid for an annual contents only home insurance policy purchased through GoCompare was £79 a year.
Personal possessions cover insures your belongings while you’re out and about against loss, accidental damage and theft.
It’s usually sold as an optional extra to your contents insurance, which generally only covers your things when they’re inside your home or garden.
Cover is sometimes limited on particular types of item, or you’ll have to name them specifically on your policy. Check your policy cover and limits on the following:
You’ll choose the total amount of cover you want for your possessions but there's usually a single article limit on each item.
The single article limit is the most you’ll be able to claim for any one item, even if it’s worth more than the limit.
The limit is usually quite high - out of 401 contents insurance policies listed on Defaqto, 96% have a single article limit of £5,000 or more but you should still check your policy's limit is high enough for your belongings
If it isn’t, you’ll be able to add high-value items like wedding rings, watches or artwork listed separately on your policy by getting in touch with your provider.
Your premiums might increase, depending on the value of the item.
No, but you could lose an awful lot if your possessions are destroyed by something like a fire or flood, or if they’re stolen.
Why you’d want it
You won’t need it if you’re a landlord, because your tenants are responsible for insuring their own property. You also won’t need it if you’re happy to just pay for replacements and repairs out of your own pocket.
New-for-old contents insurance will replace your lost or damaged belongings with brand-new ones.
For example, if your TV is stolen, your insurer will pay for you to replace it with a like-for-like new model.
It’s typically more expensive than ‘like-for-like' cover which, covers your possessions based on their current market value.
Yes - you can get a discount on your buildings and contents insurance if you haven’t claimed.
Check your policy to see whether making a claim on one would affect your premium for the other.
Last checked 10 June 2019