Almost everyone will ask this question at least once in their lives if their property has suffered from a flood, fire, accidental or criminal damage. Are all these damages covered by your insurance policy? If so which one? It may not be as simple as you think.
If you want to ensure you are fully covered with fewer exceptions, you should have both types of insurances. It would certainly help you have fewer headaches in the event of any damage to your property. However, if you must make a claim on your insurance you need to ensure it is the correct policy. If you claim under the wrong one, the claim will be rejected.
Building Insurance: This is for the building itself and covers the financial cost of repairing damage to the physical structure of your property. This includes the roof, floors and walls, as well as any fitted or permanent fixtures (e.g. a fitted kitchen). Some exclusions apply.
Contents Insurance: Contents insurance pays for damage or loss of your personal possessions located inside of your home.
There are some greys areas surrounding what is covered under Buildings Insurance and what is Contents Insurance, a Loss Assessor on an insurance claim may also have their own interpretation. You must ensure you read all your policy wordings to ensure you fully understand what is covered under your own insurance policy.
Buildings insurance used to include fixtures such as water pipes or internal doors and could sometimes include furniture. These may be included in other insurances, depending on the Loss Assessor and how they interpret them.
For example, the carpets in your house, as they are fixed to the floor of the property, should they be described as a permanent fixture and covered on the Buildings Insurance? Or as they are inside the property should they be covered by Contents Insurance as they can be changed? The definitions can change again if they were already in the property when you bought the house, or whether you’ve had them laid yourself. It can get confusing!
Even laminated flooring can be interpreted as a movable item, despite being glued or fixed under the skirting board. If you have installed any units inside your house, they could also be considered as permanent fixtures, but this would depend on whether they were installed prior to purchasing the property.
As we have mentioned to you at the beginning of this blog, this issue is complicated! What can you do about it? The best thing you can do is double check the details with your Insurer, ask for a breakdown of what they are covering and always read your policy wordings and small print.