You’ve spent a lot of time and money searching for, buying and creating your perfect home. So it makes sense to financially protect your home and its contents against unexpected incidents. These can include damage caused by a fire or flooding, for example, or theft of your belongings if your home is burgled. With home insurance in place, you have peace of mind that your home and your belongings are covered.

At Trinity Finance, we know the importance of protecting your investments. Your home is likely to be the biggest investment you’ve made so it’s essential to put financial protection in place. A home insurance policy ensures that you have adequate financial cover for any unforeseen issues. In this guide, we’ll explain what home insurance is, what is and isn’t covered by a home insurance policy, the cost of home insurance and some ways to reduce your home insurance premiums.

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    What is home insurance?

    Home insurance provides financial protection for your home and belongings. Should the unexpected happen, such as a fire, flood or burglary, a home insurance policy covers the costs of repairing the damage or replacing the stolen items.

    Types of home insurance

    There are two main types of cover available for home insurance — buildings insurance and contents insurance. They can be taken out as separate policies or you can opt for a combined home insurance policy. The latter can be more cost-effective than paying for two separate policies.

    Buildings insurance

    Buildings insurance covers the structure of your property as well as the permanent fixtures and fittings. For example, the roof, walls, fitted kitchen, bathroom suite, windows and doors are covered under buildings insurance. The costs of repairing damage – or even rebuilding your home if it’s destroyed – are covered. The incidents that may cause damage or destruction include fire, flooding, storms, subsidence, burst pipes, explosions, vandalism, theft and vehicle collisions. In some cases, the cost of alternative accommodation is covered if you need to move out temporarily while repair work is being carried out.

    Contents insurance

    Contents insurance covers the possessions kept in your home. For example, your furniture, appliances, electronics, clothes, jewellery and carpets. It provides you with financial protection in the event that your belongings are stolen or damaged, such as by fire or flooding. Some policies provide cover for the belongings you take with you when leaving your home, such as your mobile phone, watch, sunglasses and laptop. If this cover isn’t included, you can choose the optional add-on of personal possessions cover.

    A combined home insurance policy

    Using the same insurance provider, you can take out a combined home insurance policy. This includes both buildings and contents insurance cover. It’s usually a cheaper option than buying two separate policies. It’s also more convenient should you have to make a claim. Our mortgage and protection brokers will compare the home insurance costs and inclusions for you. That way, you can ensure that you benefit from the best home insurance deal for your needs.

    Optional add-ons for your home insurance

    Home insurance policies vary with what’s included as standard protection. Therefore, check the inclusions first and then ask what optional extras are available. That way, you can tailor your home insurance cover to precisely meet your needs. Bear in mind that any extras will increase your home insurance premiums although you’ll benefit from additional protection. Typical add-ons available include:

    • Accidental damage cover: Accidents happen and this extra cover is for unintentional mishaps, such as breaking a window or spilling wine on a carpet.
    • Home emergency cover: If an emergency situation crops up, this cover provides you with urgent assistance. For example, if your boiler breaks down, a pipe bursts, your front door key breaks in the lock or the drains become blocked. The costs of emergency call-out fees and repairs are covered.
    • Legal services cover: This cover provides help if a legal dispute occurs, such as with a neighbour or tradesperson. You have access to legal advice and the legal costs are covered.
    • Boiler cover: If your boiler isn’t already covered by your home insurance policy, you can include this add-on to meet the costs of any boiler repairs.
    • Personal possessions cover: Whilst your contents insurance covers your belongings within your home, personal possessions cover provides financial protection when you take items with you when leaving your home. These items can include your laptop, tablet, mobile phone, watch, jewellery, handbag and camera, for example.
    • Bicycle cover: This add-on provides cover against malicious damage, personal accidents and theft of your bike.
    • Alternative accommodation: Not all home insurance policies include cover for alternative accommodation so you can include this as an add-on. This covers the cost of temporary accommodation if your home is badly damaged and you have to move out while repairs are being carried out.

    Protected no claims: By not claiming on your home insurance each year, you benefit from a bigger discount using your no claims bonus. You can protect your no claims discount with this add-on so that you don’t lose it if you have to make a claim.

    Do you need home insurance?

    Having a home insurance policy in place isn’t a legal requirement. However, if an unforeseen issue occurs, you could be left severely out of pocket if financial protection hasn’t been arranged. Home insurance cover, therefore, gives you peace of mind that unexpected costs to repair damage or to replace items are covered. If you’ve applied for a mortgage, your lender will likely insist that you arrange buildings insurance before the contracts are exchanged.

    The benefits of home insurance

    In summary, the benefits of having home insurance include:

    • The costs of repairing damage to your home, or even rebuilding it, are covered.
    • The costs of repairing or replacing the contents within your home are covered.
    • Your belongings may be covered when you take them outside of your home.

    If your home is damaged or destroyed, you may not be able to afford any repairs or rebuild costs yourself. The same applies to your belongings. If they are unexpectedly damaged, lost or stolen, are you able to afford replacements or the costs for them to be repaired?

    Who is home insurance beneficial for?

    You can benefit from having home insurance if you are a:

    • Homeowner: When you own your home, its structure and the contents within it are your responsibility.
    • Landlord: As a landlord, you’re legally liable for the condition of the property and, therefore, need to insure the building. You can also insure any contents you’ve left in the rental property to cover them in the event of damage or theft.
    • Tenant: When renting a property, the landlord is responsible for arranging buildings insurance as well as cover for their contents. You only need to insure your own belongings — they won’t be covered under the landlord’s policy.
    • House or flat sharer: If you live in shared housing, you should arrange cover for your belongings. Shared housing is considered a higher risk by insurers. This means the premium you pay may be determined by certain aspects, such as access points and door locks.
    • Student: Your belongings may be covered by your parents’ home insurance policy if you’re living in student accommodation. If this is the case, there may be restrictions that you need to be aware of so it’s important that your parents check with their insurer. If you’re not covered by your parents’ policy, it’s advisable to get contents insurance for your belongings.
    • Holiday homeowner: As your holiday home is likely to be empty for long periods, you’ll need specialist home insurance cover.

    What does home insurance cover?

    The level of cover provided by your home insurance policy depends on your insurer and the details of your policy. Generally, though, home insurance policies have the same inclusions and exclusions. The specifics that are usually covered include:

    • Fire damage
    • Damage caused by flooding or storms
    • Subsidence
    • Frozen, burst or leaking pipes
    • Fallen trees
    • Vandalism and theft

    What’s not covered by home insurance?

    Home insurance policies usually have these exclusions:

    • Wear and tear
    • Poor workmanship or damage caused by DIY
    • General maintenance
    • An unoccupied property
    • Negligence
    • Pest damage
    • Storm damage to gates, fences or hedges

    Home insurance cover for non-standard properties

    Your home may be considered to be non-standard if it’s been constructed from non-standard materials. For example, it may have been built with a timber frame or have a thatched roof. In this case, you need specialist non-standard home insurance.

    Discuss your home insurance needs with an expert

    Our mortgage and protection brokers – located throughout Kent, London and Edinburgh – are here to help you decide on the right level of cover. They can advise you on the differences between the types of home insurance available and the optional add-ons you can choose from. They can also guide you on how to calculate the rebuild value for your home and how to work out the value of your contents. That way, you won’t underestimate or overestimate the level of cover you need for your buildings or contents insurance.

    Just give us a call on 01322 907 000 to discuss your insurance needs and any queries you may have. Our specialist brokers will compare the deals available and check the inclusions and exclusions of each one. They’ll advise you on the optional add-ons that you can include if you prefer additional protection. Your policy will be tailored specifically to meet your needs so that you have the best home insurance cover in place. If you prefer, send us an email at or an enquiry via our contact form. We’ll reply to you as quickly as possible with more information about the insurance options available.

    How much does home insurance cost?

    The cost of your home insurance cover depends on various factors. These include your property’s age, structure and location as well as the rebuild cost and the value of your contents. Your claims history will be taken into account as will any add-ons that you’ve chosen to include and the security features your property has.

    What affects the cost of home insurance?

    Generally, the greater the likelihood of your home being damaged or burgled, the higher your home insurance premiums will be. The following factors can have an impact on the cost of your home insurance:

    • The size of your property. The cost to rebuild your home will be higher the larger it is and, therefore, this will be reflected in the premiums you pay.
    • Your property’s location. If your home is situated in an area that’s prone to flooding or one that has a high crime rate, you’ll pay higher premiums.
    • The age of your property. The materials used to construct older properties are expensive to replace. As well as that, the plumbing or electrical wiring may be outdated.
    • Building materials used. Non-standard materials are more expensive to replace. This means that properties built using non-standard materials, such as those with a thatched roof or a timber frame, have higher insurance premiums.
    • Security features. If your home has adequate security, it’s considered to be less of a risk by the insurer. For example, locks on the windows, smoke alarms, a secure front door and a burglar alarm are good security features. Having good security in place will help to keep your premiums lower.
    • The value of your belongings. The higher the value of your belongings, the higher your premiums will be.
    • Add-ons you’ve included in your policy. Each add-on that you choose to include will increase your premiums. However, you’ll benefit from a specific cover, such as home emergency cover or accidental damage cover, that won’t otherwise be included in your home insurance policy.
    • Your claims history. Insurance providers reward those who don’t make claims so, if that applies to you, you’ll benefit from a no claims discount.

    Can you get cheaper home insurance?

    There are ways to reduce your premiums so that you can benefit from cheaper home insurance:

    • Choose combined home insurance cover. It’s usually more cost-effective to take out a combined home insurance policy rather than individual buildings and contents insurance policies.
    • Install security features. The better your home security, the lower the risk for insurers. Therefore, install high-quality locks on your home’s door and windows, smoke alarms, a burglar alarm and a safe.
    • Increase your voluntary excess. Voluntary excess is the amount you pay yourself when making a claim. If you’re prepared to increase this amount, your insurer will usually offer you a lower premium.
    • Try not to overestimate the rebuild cost or the value of your contents. Overestimating the cost to rebuild your home or the value of your belongings can increase your premiums. Therefore, try to be as accurate as possible when it comes to the sum you want to insure. Don’t underestimate the sum insured to save costs, however. Doing so could leave you very short of funds if you have to make a claim.
    • Build up your no claims bonus. With each year that you don’t make a claim on your policy, you receive a no claims bonus. You usually benefit from a bigger no claims discount on your insurance cover the longer you manage not to claim.
    • Pay annually rather than in monthly instalments. When you pay in monthly instalments, you’re charged interest, making your home insurance cover more expensive. Therefore, if you’re able to, pay for your annual policy amount in full.

    Other types of home insurance that are available

    If standard home insurance doesn’t meet your needs, other types of specialist home insurance are available. For example, your home may be a listed building, a holiday home or left unoccupied for long periods. You may be building your own home or just need temporary home insurance. Whatever your home insurance needs, our mortgage and protection brokers can find the right policy for you.

    Protect your home and belongings with home insurance

    Unforeseen incidents do happen and you need to consider how you’d cover the costs if your home was damaged – or worse, destroyed – by a fire or flood. Or how you’d afford to replace your belongings if they were stolen from your home. With home insurance, you have peace of mind that your home and belongings are financially protected should the unexpected happen. Our mortgage and protection brokers – located throughout Kent, London and Edinburgh – can guide you on the options available and how to calculate the sum assured. Simply call us on 01322 907 000 and one of our specialist brokers will be happy to help you with your home insurance needs.

    At Trinity Finance, we ensure that your home insurance policy is tailored to your requirements, providing you with affordable cover. No matter how complex your insurance needs, we can search for the best home insurance deals to meet them. If you’re unable to contact us by phone, just send your details to us by email at or via our contact form. A home insurance policy expert will get in touch with you as quickly as possible with more information.


    Having home insurance in place isn’t a legal requirement. However, it provides financial protection should your home be damaged or destroyed in an unexpected event or your belongings are stolen. If you’re arranging a mortgage, the lender will more than likely insist that you take out a buildings insurance policy before the exchange of contracts.

    Yes. If you live with someone else, you can opt for a joint home insurance policy. This may be a more cost-effective option than taking out separate policies. You can both make a claim on the policy if need be.

    Insurance for older properties is usually more expensive as the materials they were built with can be costly to replace. Insurers also consider older properties to be a higher risk. This is because they can have outdated electrical wiring and plumbing, for example, or an old roof. These increase the risk of damage to your home and the likelihood of you claiming on your insurance.

    Whether or not you can make a claim depends on the reason for not receiving a rental income and the cover you’ve chosen to include in your HMO insurance policy. For example, your tenants may have had to move out of your property because it’s become uninhabitable. This could be because of a fire or flood, for example. In this case, if you’ve taken out loss of rent cover, you’ll be reimbursed for any rental income that you lose as a result of this. Another example is if your tenants fail to pay their rent. As long as you’ve taken out rent guarantee insurance, the rental income will be covered.

    Insuring the block itself is the freeholder’s responsibility and they have to ensure that it’s covered by buildings insurance. If you’re a leaseholder or a tenant, you should protect your belongings with contents insurance cover.

    No, most home insurance policies don’t include cover for general wear and tear. Cover is provided for unexpected incidents rather than those that fall under general maintenance responsibilities.

    There are two types of home insurance policy excess — compulsory and voluntary excess. Compulsory excess has to be paid when you make a claim. This excess amount is set by the insurer and cannot be changed.

    Voluntary excess is the amount you choose to pay on top of the compulsory excess. You decide how much you want to pay when you take out your initial policy and can change it when you renew your policy. Some insurance providers allow you to change it mid-policy but you may be charged a fee for this. If you opt to pay a higher voluntary excess, you’ll more than likely benefit from lower premiums. Just be sure that you can afford to pay this excess as well as the compulsory excess if you have to make a claim.

    If you’re renting a property, you only need financial protection for your own possessions using tenants’ contents insurance. It’s your landlord’s responsibility to take out buildings insurance for the property and contents insurance for any of their belongings that they’ve left in the property.

    Yes, although you need to provide the insurer with details of this. Restrictions on your cover may be put in place while the work is being carried out and your insurance cost may increase during this time. If you fail to notify your insurer that major structural works are being carried out and there’s an unexpected mishap, you may be unable to claim as the insurer may invalidate your policy.

    Your home insurance policy may provide you with some cover but perhaps not enough if you have stock or equipment related to your business. It’s important to check this with your insurance provider. If you don’t notify them that you’re working from home, you may find that your policy is invalidated should you need to make a claim.

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