What is trace and access cover?

What is trace and access cover?

Never come across trace and access cover? You're not the only one – but it could prove vital in an emergency. Read our guide to find out all you need to know.

Chris King From the Home team
3
minute read
posted

Finding the source of a leak can be an expensive and disruptive process. Trace and access cover could protect you from the costs of that work, plus any reinstatement that may need to happen afterwards. In some cases the leak might not be something that's covered under the insurance policy, this could be a result of a damp proof course failing or another maintenance issue. You wouldn't be covered for the damage caused in this situation, however trace and access should still cover you for any of the investigative work to find the source of the problem.

Unidentified leaks are far from an unusual problem – figures from the Association of British Insurers (ABI) show that domestic escape of water claims cost insurance providers £483 million in the first nine months of 2017.

Does trace and access cover come as standard?

Not always, no. Some home insurance policies include trace and access cover, and others don't. But you don't want to discover your policy doesn't cover you when a leak is happening.

We suggest checking your policy to see if you have any cover in place. Even if you do, most policies have limits of between £5,000 and £10,000 for this kind of cover.

What is trace and access insurance?

I have trace and access cover. What should I do if there’s a leak?

If water or oil is escaping from your heating system and the cause isn't obvious, first contact your insurance provider to get their advice. If you have home emergency cover, they may recommend sending their own approved plumber to prevent further damage by trying to isolate the leak.

You're likely to need to keep any relevant information and evidence – such as photos of damage – so check with your provider what they expect when you contact them.

Remember trace and access cover will help pay for any damaged caused in trying to find the leak, it won't cover for anything damaged by the leak itself – this is what the main part of your home insurance policy is for.

Do the same rules apply with underground pipes?

You're usually responsible for the pipes that run underneath your land. These could include water, gas and sewage pipes, as well as electricity and TV cables.

If you notice a leak, trace and access cover could help pay for the cost of any investigative work to identify the problem. If your drain is damaged, then check your policy includes cover for drains, pipes and cables, which should provide cover for tree root damage to pipes, for example.

Or use our comparison service to compare home buildings insurance  find a policy that includes trace and access cover.

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*For the period 1st June to 31st August 2018, 3,180 people responded to the question “Overall how easy was it for you to get a quote” for home, 3,029 responded with a score of easy or very easy (95.3%).                
                    
                   

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