Top tips for a home insurance claim

Almost four in five home insurance claims during 2013-14 were successful and the average payout was £2,520 – around nine times higher than the average buildings and contents policy at £290/year.*

But if you are in the unlucky position of having to claim on your home insurance, the Association of British Insurers has written some top tips for homeowners for making a successful claim:

1. Understand what you are insured for. Make sure you have read your policy so that the cover meets your needs. Home insurance policies can vary, including if you are covered for accidental damage, or for damage to possessions away from your home.

2. Keep your insurer's claim contact details handy so you can claim as quickly as possible. Most insurers have 24-hour emergency helplines, so you can get advice to get your claim moving as quickly as possible.

3. If necessary arrange temporary repairs to stop any damage getting worse. If you can, call your insurer’s emergency helpline first for advice. Keep any receipts as these will form part of your claim.

4. Do not rush to throw damaged items away, unless they are a health hazard (such as rotting food) as your insurer may want to inspect them. Your insurer can quickly advise you on this.

5. Remember that home insurance is not a maintenance contract. It is designed to cover a range of risks such as flood, storm damage, fire and theft as set out in the policy. It will not cover problems from wear and tear or poor maintenance.

Another key point is to remember to keep your insurance up to date – if you miss a payment or your insurance period runs out, you will not be covered if you need to make a claim.

*Source; ABI tips on claiming were first published at