The UK’s best home emergency cover in 2020

Home emergency cover is usually an optional extra to bolster your standard home and contents insurance policy. We've covered some of the best providers, and the options available.

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Home emergency policies are designed to cover you if something goes wrong in your home such as a pest infestation, the boiler breaks or there’s a leak. If you have one of these policies your insurer should send a registered tradesperson to fix the problem straight away and pay for the cost. It doesn’t cover you for any non-emergency repair work that needs doing, as this is what your home insurance policy is for. You can buy home emergency policies on their own or as an add-on to a home insurance policy.

Looking for the best home emergency cover available? The reality is that “best” will depend on your own individual circumstances, what cover limit you want and whether or not you really need it. We’ve picked out some of the best insurers offering home insurance policies which include home emergency cover, and standalone home emergency policies.

Some of the best home emergency cover companies in the UK

Aviva home emergency cover

As one of the most well-known insurers in the UK, Aviva has a range of home insurance policies including home emergency cover. There are three different levels of cover to choose from with Aviva's home emergency. The most basic policy, which costs £12.50 a month, covers just the heating system; the next tier covers the heating and plumbing, and the third tier also includes electrics and security.
  • Aviva's home insurance policies can be enhanced with extra protection.
  • 15% discount for buying home insurance online.
  • Accidental damage is only included in the highest level of cover.

Tesco Bank home emergency cover

Tesco's home emergency cover comes as standard in some of its policies or can be bought as an add-on. Any home emergency claims made with the Tesco policy are handled by HomeServe. Tesco Clubcard customers get a 20% discount on home insurance policies.
  • 81% of Tesco Bank home insurance customers in our 2020 satisfaction survey would recommend it to a friend.
  • Multiple underwriters so claim process can be confusing.

Direct Line home emergency cover

Home emergency cover is included as standard with the Direct Line Home Plus Insurance and can also be added as an extra to the basic insurance policy. It covers all of the basic scenarios as standard plus up to £250 for a night's stay if your home is uninhabitable. It doesn't cover things such as boilers with an output over 70kw or underfloor heating.
  • Direct Line's home insurance comes in three levels to suit different budgets.
  • Claims can be made 24/7 or online.
  • You will have to pay a cancellation fee in order to terminate your policy after the 14-day cooling off period.

Barclays home emergency cover

With a home emergency policy from Barclays, there's only one policy but that includes lots of different scenarios as standard. These include loss of essential services, sudden damage to a roof, plumbing problems and electrical emergencies. It doesn't cover some things including dual purpose boilers, warm air and solar heating systems, or under-floor heating.
  • Barclays Platinum home insurance has a 5-star rating from Defaqto
  • 24-hour claim line.
  • Premium cover only available to Premier customers.

John Lewis home emergency cover

The home emergency cover from John Lewis is underwritten by the insurer Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance plc. It can be added to an essential or plus home insurance cover for an extra fee, and comes included in the premier and specialist home insurance policies. The home emergency element of the cover includes all of the standard scenarios including burst internal pipes, electricity supply failure and blocked drains.
  • John Lewis Finance's Premier and Specialist home insurance policies are 5*-Defaqto-rated.
  • John Lewis Finance's different cover options suit different requirements and budgets.
  • You may have to pay an administration fee if you decide to amend your policy.
  • You may have to pay a cancellation fee in order to terminate your policy after the 14-day cooling-off period.
  • British Gas. There are a few different options to choose from when looking at home emergency cover from British Gas. You can choose from four tiers of cover for those who want a policy covering all scenarios or those who want one just for your boiler and heating system, plumbing and drains cover, or home electrical cover. Prices start at £14 for the most basic policy.
  • DAS. Home emergency cover from DAS includes as standard everything from roof damage, the heating system and plumbing, to home security and lost keys. The insurer doesn’t sell policies directly but instead has partners across the UK, including Hiscox and Aon, where you can buy cover from.
  • HomeServe. As one of the giants in the home emergency cover world, HomeServe has a few different options to choose from to suit your circumstances and budget. These include boiler and heating cover from £8 a month, plumbing and drainage cover from 75p a month, kitchen appliance insurance from £1.38 a month, and electrics cover from £3 a month. HomeServe has mixed reviews from customers, but overall, its rating on Trustpilot is 4.2 (as of October 2020).

How to find the best home emergency cover

  1. Check your existing policy. Before you do anything, always check your existing home insurance policy to see what you’re covered for. You don’t want to buy a new policy if you don’t need it and some home insurance policies will provide cover for emergencies. You may also have cover through your current account if it’s a packaged account, so double check there as well.
  2. Choose a cover limit. Look through the emergency scenarios covered by a home emergency policy and think about what you might need cover for. Do you just need a very basic policy or do you want one which will pay out for any situation?
  3. Compare different policies. Lots of companies provide this kind of cover so always compare different policies to make sure you’re getting one which suits your needs and you’re paying the best price for you.
  4. Choose your excess. If there’s an excess with the policy, make sure this is an amount you would be comfortable paying and check the cover limits for each scenario listed in the policy.
  5. Check customer reviews. It’s always worth looking at customer reviews and experiences with the insurer to make sure you’re choosing one you can rely on.

Compare home insurance providers with emergency cover options

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Maximum Buildings Cover Maximum Contents Cover Home emergency Details
Admiral home insurance
Unlimited (depending on policy)
Up to £150,000 (depending on level of cover)
Optional extra
Choose from 3 different home insurance products with varying levels of cover and benefits. Each cover level combines both building and contents insurance under one policy.
Tesco Bank Home Insurance
Unlimited
Up to £100,000 (depending on cover level)
Optional extra
Buildings and contents insurance can be bought separately or combined. Each has a range of different features and there are also optional extras you can include to boost your cover.
Endsleigh Home Insurance
£500,000
£50,000
Optional extra
Tailor your policy with optional extras including family legal protection and accidental damage. Cover for non-standard construction.
More Than home insurance
£1,000,000
£100,000
Choose from a range of optional extras and upgrades. 24/7 home emergency cover included as standard.
GetSafe
Contents only
Unspecified
Not specified
GetSafe is a newcomer to the home insurance space - offering contents insurance for both tenants and home owners that can be managed easily through an app.

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Bottom line

There are lots of choices when it comes to home emergency cover but the most important thing is choosing a policy which meets your needs and one that provides value for money.

If you’re sure home emergency cover is for you, and you want the peace of mind of knowing you’ll be covered should something happen, just remember to always read the policy wording, check out recent customer reviews and compare a few different prices before you buy.

Frequently asked questions

The offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of products we can track; we don't cover every product on the market...yet. Unless we've indicated otherwise, products are shown in no particular order or ranking. The terms "best", "top", "cheap" (and variations), aren't product ratings, although we always explain what's great about a product when we highlight it; this is subject to our terms of use. When making a big financial decision, it's wise to consider getting independent financial advice, and always consider your own financial circumstances when comparing products so you get what's right for you.

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