How to save money on your home insurance

It's one of those costs we're all faced with, so how can you save money on your home insurance?

Maeve McLaughlin
by Maeve McLaughlin on 25th October, 2016

If you own your own home, you’re probably forking out for buildings and contents insurance every month. And, if you’re renting, you may have standalone contents insurance to cover things like your laptop, bike, or jewellery.

This insurance is a necessary expense, but if you haven’t reviewed your cover since you originally signed up, it’s possible that you could be paying over the odds for it.

Read on to see our tips for reducing your home insurance costs.

1. Shop around

If you have never switched home insurance provider, the chances are you could save money by switching - especially if you have a no claims bonus. The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission regularly carries out home insurance price surveys which show huge differences in yearly home insurance costs between different providers.

You can shop around by going to a broker, or by simply contacting a number of providers yourself to compare quotes. Although it will take an hour or so to do this, you could save hundreds on your policy, so it’s definitely worth taking the time out to do so.

2. Make sure you’ve properly estimated your rebuild cost

When you are looking for a quote, make sure you don’t overestimate the rebuild cost of your home and ensure you give an accurate valuation of the contents, too.

Remember, your rebuild cost is not the market value of your home, rather it’s how much it would cost to completely rebuild it in the event of extensive damage. Generally this is considerably lower than the market value.

If you don’t know where to start, the Society of Chartered Surveyors has a handy rebuilding cost calculator which will give you a good idea.

3. Consider your contents cover

Ensure you also give an accurate estimation of the contents of your home. Things like your couch, TV, bed etc. will be covered as unspecified items.

You may want to add on specified cover for items like jewellery (generally items worth more than €1,000) to make sure they’re insured if they are lost or damaged outside your home.

Your insurer will also require you to specify certain items like laptops, bikes, and mobile phones regardless of value. Giving accurate values for all of these things will ensure your quote is right for you.

4. Make some small adjustments to your home

There are a number of things that insurers take into account when calculating your premium - and some of these will lead to a discount.

For example, having a house alarm, fitting secure locks and installing smoke alarms will likely reduce your premium. If you don’t have these things in your home already, it might be worth the initial outlay to save money over the length of your policy.

5. Ask if it’s cheaper to pay in one go

It’s possible that your home insurance provider will ask for your bank details in order to set up monthly payments to cover your premium.

However, if you can afford it, see if you can save by paying all in one go. Often there are additional charges for paying monthly, so this could save you and will mean one less monthly expense.