Compare home insurance in the UK
Find out how to cut the cost of buildings and contents insurance, and get quotes from leading home insurers.
Good home insurance can give you confidence that you’re financially protected if your home or its contents are damaged or destroyed, or if you’re the victim of theft or burglary. But the level of cover can vary, so it’s important to do your research before you buy. Use the table below to compare home insurance policies from many of the UK’s leading providers. When you’re ready to get a quote, hit the green button.
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
What is home insurance?
Home insurance is designed to cover any unexpected harm to your home and belongings. It means that if your house or flat – or its contents – are damaged or destroyed, or if valuable items are stolen during a burglary, you will receive a financial payout to cover the cost of all or some of your loss. This will enable you to repair or rebuild your home or to replace your belongings.
Home insurance jargon explainedCertificate of home insurance. A document you get from your insurer that provides legal evidence that you’re insured.
Duty of disclosure. A requirement for you to tell the insurer about anything that might affect your policy. This applies both when you take out the policy and if anything changes, such as an increase in the number of people living in your home.
Sum insured. The maximum amount that will be paid out towards repairing or rebuilding your home, or replacing your belongings. The sum insured amount is set when you take out your policy.
Proof of ownership. A document, such as a receipt or a photo of you with an item, that proves that you owned something you make a home insurance claim for. This is particularly important for high-value items.
How to compare home insurance
To compare home insurance policies effectively, you’ll need to follow a few simple steps.
- Think about your basic cover needs. Before you start shopping for a policy, consider the risks you want to cover and the level of protection you need. For example, do you need both buildings and contents insurance? What is the value of your home and belongings, including individual valuable items, and how does this affect the level of cover you need? Once you’re clear on the type of home insurance you’re after, you can start looking for the right policy.
- Decide which optional extras you want. Some policies include various “add-ons” as standard, but more often you’ll need to pay extra. If you like the sound of accidental damage or personal possessions cover, for example, make sure you take account of any additional costs when you compare home insurance policies.
- Use a price comparison site such as Finder to compare policies. Don’t automatically settle for the first, or cheapest, policy you find. Instead you should compare the benefits, costs, features and exclusions of a wide range of policies to work out which option provides the best value for money. Bear in mind some insurers aren’t on price comparison sites, so you may need to check a handful directly to get a complete picture. If you have an unusual or high-risk property – for example a house with a thatched roof, or with a history of flooding – you may benefit from using a specialist insurance broker.
- Ask for recommendations. Check out online reviews, and ask friends and family for their home insurance recommendations. Home insurance only proves its worth when you need to make a claim. So, hearing from people who have actually had to make a claim on their policy is a great way to sort the strong policies and insurers from the weaker ones.
- Read the policy docs. Don’t wait until it’s time to make a claim to check your policy documents. Read the terms and conditions of shortlisted insurers (or at very least the summary) before you buy the policy. This will allow you to determine exactly what the policy includes, how much protection it offers, and under what circumstances cover would not be provided.
How can I save money on my home insurance?
It is important to remember that the cheapest home insurance isn’t necessarily the best home insurance. An ultra-cheap policy could prove a false economy if it doesn’t pay out when you need to claim. If you’re looking for the best value insurance cover for your home, the single most important thing you can do is compare home insurance policies. Shop around for the best deal on the right kind of policy for you. This will help you make sure you are getting true value for money.
Practical ways to keep costs down include:
- Review cover and compare policies regularly. Just because a particular insurance policy was right for you a few years ago doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the right fit for you now. Cover needs change all the time. Maybe you’ve just invested in a top-of-the-line home entertainment system and want to upgrade your contents cover. In addition, insurers are constantly updating policies and premiums. Don’t be afraid to compare your options every year and see if you can find a better deal.
- Choose a higher excess. If you are given the option, you might want to consider opting for a higher excess in return for lower premiums. Bear in mind that, if you need to make a claim, you may regret setting your voluntary excess extremely high in order to reduce your premiums by a relatively small amount.
- Don’t add options you don’t need. Adding optional extras to your policy allows you to tailor home insurance protection to your requirements. Unfortunately, it also increases the premium, so make sure anything you add is absolutely essential.
- Build up a no-claims bonus. Most insurers will give you a discount on your premiums for every year you don’t make a claim. Sometimes making a claim is unavoidable, but you can minimise the risk by taking care with your home and belongings, and keeping up with maintenance. You may also decide not to submit a claim for minor damage that you can afford to repair yourself.
- Take advantage of discounts. Home insurers offer a variety of discounts to customers. These include discounts for having multiple policies with the insurer or for purchasing online.
- Improve your home’s security. Simple things like installing a burglar alarm or extra door locks could help reduce your premiums. It reduces your risk for the insurer and you are likely to rewarded with lower premiums.
- Pay annually. Insurers tend to charge more if you pay your premiums monthly rather than in a single annual sum.
What types of home insurance are there?
There are 2 main types of home insurance. If you own the property you live in, you’ll need to have both types to be fully protected.
Buildings insurance protects the bricks and mortar structure of the home from things like fire and flood. It also covers any parts of your property that are fixed in place, such as a fitted kitchen. If you wouldn’t usually take something with you if you moved house, it’s probably covered by buildings insurance.
You can buy buildings insurance and contents insurance as separate policies, or together as a combined home insurance policy. The best choice depends on your personal circumstances. Combined policies are more convenient and often cheaper, but may not be practical if you live in a flat where the buildings insurance policy is shared between multiple flat owners, for example.
Home insurance can feel like a necessary evil, and it can be tempting to cut corners and opt for lower levels of cover to keep premiums down.
But try to resist the temptation to underinsure just to save a few pounds. Buying insurance with too-low limits could come back to bite you if, for example, you need to make a claim and find that your £10,000 worth of belongings are only covered to a maximum of £5,000.”
What does home insurance cover?
The situations covered by your home insurance will vary depending on the insurer you choose and the level of cover you opt for, so you’ll need to compare home insurance policies carefully. However, the best policies generally provide cover against the following as standard:
- Theft or burglary. If criminals target your home, you’ll be covered for loss or damage caused by theft, attempted theft or burglary.
- Malicious acts and vandalism. If your home or contents are damaged due to vandalism or a malicious act, your policy will cover you.
- Riots or civil commotion. Loss or damage caused by a riot, civil commotion, or industrial or political disturbance.
- Burst pipes and other water damage. When water or oil escapes from gutters, pipes, baths, toilets, appliances or a range of other household items, home insurance covers you for the resulting loss or damage to the property itself (buildings insurance) and your belongings (contents insurance).
- Flood. Loss or damage caused by water that has escaped the normal confines of a lake, river or a number of other bodies of water. Some home insurance policies only offer flood cover as an option, not as an automatic inclusion, so make sure you check your policy documents.
- Fire. If your home and/or contents are lost or damaged due to fire.
- Storm. Loss or damage caused by a storm, including violent winds, hail, snow, rain, or thunderstorms.
- Lightning. Loss or damage caused by lightning, or by a power surge caused by lightning.
- Earthquakes. This benefit ensures that you are covered against loss or damage caused by an earthquake.
- Explosion. Loss or damage caused by an explosion, or a landslide or subsidence that occurs as an immediate result of an explosion.
- Impact damage. This benefit covers you against impact from objects such as falling trees, power poles, TV antennas, motor vehicles and meteorites.
- Subsidence. This offers support if the foundations of your property give way, gradually or over time, causing cracks in the walls or other damage.
What are home insurance optional extras?
Home insurance add-ons are extra elements of cover that aren’t typically part of standard home insurance cover. Depending on the specific policy, some insurers may include some of these elements in your premium. But, more commonly, you’ll need to pay an additional premium for each add-on.
Common add-ons include:
- Accidental damage. It may seem surprising, but not all accidental damage is covered as standard by a home insurance policy. Many policies cover accidental damage to specific items – fixed glass, ceramics and mirrors, and home entertainment equipment are typically covered, for example. But many other mishaps, caused by members of your household, pets or visiting friends, aren’t usually covered as standard. So if you want to be protected against a dinner guest spilling red wine over a cream sofa or a DIY disaster, you’ll need an accidental damage add-on. You can take out accidental damage cover for both buildings and contents.
- Bicycle cover. Bikes up to a certain value might be covered as standard in your home insurance policy, but there’s likely to be a limit on how much an insurer will pay out, and bikes may not be covered when you’re out and about. A bicycle add-on can offer reassurance that your wheels are fully protected, as long as you’ve left your bike securely locked up.
- High-value items. Your standard home insurance policy will only cover valuables – such as jewellery or art – up to a certain limit. There will usually be a per-item limit, and an overall limit. If you own valuables that exceed either of these limits, you can pay extra to insure them as named items.
- Home emergency. This covers the immediate cost of dealing with home emergency problems. These could include, for example, fixing a broken boiler or a burst pipe or, in some cases, sorting out a pest infestation. Bear in mind that home emergency cover won’t pay for the cost of damage to the structure of your home or your belongings as a result of the emergency, such as water damage to walls as a result of a burst pipe. That will be covered by your regular home insurance policy.
- Legal expenses. This typically covers the cost of legal proceedings relating to your property, such as a dispute with a tradesperson over shoddy work or a boundary dispute with a neighbour. It often also covers legal expenses incurred as a result of employment disputes or if someone is injured in your property.
- Personal possessions. Standard contents insurance only covers you for belongings inside your property. The personal possessions add-on extends cover to portable items you take out of your home, such as jewellery, your mobile phone, laptop and other gadgets.
- Protected no-claims discount. As is also the case with car insurance, for every year you go without making a claim on your home insurance, you build up a discount on following years’ premiums. If you haven’t made a claim for a few years, this discount could be worth a fair amount. The no-claims discount protection add-on means that you won’t lose your discount if you make up to a certain number of claims.
Is home insurance worth it?
Home insurance isn’t a legal requirement, but if you don’t have it, you risk losing everything if the worst happens – if your home burns down in a fire, for example. Even if the loss is less extreme, the cost of home insurance is a small price to pay for the peace of mind that you’re financially covered for any damage to your property or its contents.
If you have a mortgage, it’s likely to be a condition of the loan that you must have buildings insurance on the mortgaged property.
If you rent your home, you don’t need to pay for buildings insurance as that’s the landlord’s responsibility. However, particularly if you are furnishing the property yourself, you may want to take out contents insurance to cover your belongings.
Pros and cons
- Financial protection if your home or its contents are damaged or destroyed
- Option to add cover for portable items outside of your home
- Peace of mind that you won’t be left shelling out, potentially, hundreds of thousands of pounds.
- There are some surprising exclusions from standard cover, such as many types of accidental damage
- Excesses can mean that it may not be worth putting in a claim for lower-cost loss or repairs
- You’ll often need to pay extra to cover high-value items.
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Frequently asked questions
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Adjusting your policy
Making a claim
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