Finding the right holiday home insurance policy for your needs can be a difficult task. Unfortunately there are a number of myths and misconceptions that are constantly being circulated regarding holiday home insurance which can add to the difficulty and confusion. This can unfortunately lead people to taking out policies that aren’t right for their needs, or finding that their existing policy doesn’t give them the cover they need.
Myth #1 – Accidental damage to your home’s contents is automatically covered
Holiday home insurers usually only provide an accidental damage clause for an extra cost, meaning you should ask if any quotations include this. That’s why you should always discuss accidental damage and the protection offered for your other belongings, before taking out a holiday home insurance policy.
Myth #2 – You are covered if a pet damages your property
Unfortunately this is not true. The majority of insurers will specifically exclude any damage arising from chewing, tearing, scratching or fouling from your policy. If you are renting your property, it might be worth checking if the tenants are bringing their family pet and perhaps taking a higher security deposit which can be refunded on leaving if no damage has been done by the pet.
Myth #3 – Your policy protects contents in your garden as well
This is a myth that can cost you a lot of money, as belongings left in gardens are not usually automatically protected by your holiday home insurance policy. Instead, you need to ensure your patio furniture or other possessions are kept safely under lock and key in a secure outbuilding. If they’re just left out in the open in your garden, your holiday home providers won’t cover the cost of replacing any damaged or stolen goods.
Myth #4 – Holiday homes in rural areas are easier to insure
While some areas may be more expensive for insuring a holiday home, for example if there’s a high local crime rate, it doesn’t make any difference that your property is located in the country. Though quiet areas may seem like they should result in a lower premium, in reality it just means there’s less people around to notice if a crime does occur.
Myth #5 – Your property should be insured for its full market value
Most people think the cost of buildings cover for your holiday home should match the current market value. However, it should actually match the cost of rebuilding your home, which is usually less than the market price. When you’re calculating this, make sure you include the cost of building materials, man power and living costs or loss of rent while the rebuild is taking place. Check www.scs.ie for a rebuild cost guideline.
Myth #6 – Most holiday home insurers will reduce the size of your claim
The only reason holiday home insurance companies may reduce the size of your claim is if you have underinsured your property. In that case, your claim payments will probably be reduced by the ratio by which your property is underinsured. So if this myth has caused you to believe you should add money on to your insurance claims to make up for a reduction by the insurance company, don’t! After all, this could result in a fraud conviction and an invalidated policy.
If you’d like more advice on your holiday home insurance, contact OBF today. Our expert underwriting team would be delighted to discuss your policy options with you.