Would you know what to do if your boiler goes on the blink, your pipes get blocked, or your plumbing springs a leak? Be ready for any such incidents, and give yourself that extra peace of mind with a home emergency policy.
What is home emergency insurance?
In general, home emergency protection covers boiler breakdown, central heating or electrical failure, loss of hot water, plumbing issues like burst pipes, and/or drainage problems. One of the major benefits of such a product is immediate access to people that can help fix your problem fast. Some products also extend to cover lost keys, appliance breakdowns and infestations.
Be sure to check the terms and conditions for any policy exclusions that may affect you before you purchase.
Who should get home emergency cover?
If you’re considering home emergency insurance, then the first thing to do is check whether you already have the cover you’re looking for.
If you rent a property, then home emergency cover is the responsibility of the landlord. And if you’re a homeowner, you’ll almost certainly have buildings and contents insurance in place already. This may include some or all the things covered by home emergency insurance.
If home emergencies aren’t covered, then you might want to look to add this cover on to your existing policy for extra protection.
What counts as an ‘emergency’ in the eyes of insurers?
Believe it or not, there’s no one simple answer to this. Different home insurance companies will classify different incidents as emergencies. For example, a policy may qualify a blocked toilet as an emergency if you only have one toilet in your home, but not if there are several.
As such, it’s best to make sure you understand exactly what’s covered when making emergency home insurance comparisons.
You might also want to check how quickly your provider will get help to you when you need it and if they source a tradesperson for you, or leave that to you?
Will your boiler be included?
Generally, yes. The boiler is commonly included in home emergency insurance. But again, make sure. Different policies offer different levels of protection, and not all boilers can be insured. You’ll need to be aware of this when getting emergency home insurance quotes.
For example, some policies will only cover a boiler if it’s maintained and serviced each year – while some actually include an annual service as part of their coverage. Some products may not cover the boiler in the summer months, as a broken down boiler is only viewed as an emergency during winter.
Also, be sure to check the age of your boiler, as it may not be insurable at all if it’s eight years old or more.
And finally, remember that your boiler could be covered by the manufacturer’s guarantee, or by an additional warranty you may have taken out previously. The same goes for any other appliances you’re looking to cover. So be sure to check that you’re not paying to insure things you don’t need to.
What else do I need to know?
As always with insurance, read the small print. You may be surprised to learn that some home emergency cover won’t take effect for a short period after you’ve taken it out. This is to discourage people from claiming for problems that existed before they bought the policy.
There may also be conditions and restrictions. Some home emergency policies don’t have an excess – that’s the amount you pay upfront if you need assistance. But others do, so keep an eye out for this. The same goes for call-out charges for tradespeople, paying for parts or labour, and a maximum amount covered per emergency.
Lastly, remember to take care of and carefully maintain your home, to help prevent any unnecessary emergencies. Home emergency insurance isn’t there to replace the general maintenance of your home. What’s more, you may not be able to claim if a lack of maintenance is to blame for the problem.
Now you’ve got the facts, you can compare home emergency protection with comparethemarket.com. Select from the available options, and we’ll list out your cheapest quotes from our panel of providers, all in one place.