Tis’ The Season For Shopping Around For Home Insurance

Season Shopping Home Insurance

The Christmas season has finally swung into full gear. Everyone has a million and one things to get done and roughly double that amount on their minds, so it’s pretty understandable that during the holidays insurance is the furthest thing from your mind. However, it could well be the best time to shop around and reduce your premium. After all who wouldn’t like to save a few hundred Euro over the Christmas period?

Insuremyhouse.ie Managing Director Jonathan Hehir has pointed out that a number of consumers have fallen into a state of ‘Insurance Exhaustion’ in recent times. This is due to the fact that consumers have been shackled by astronomical motor insurance premiums over the past number of years, facing an uphill struggle when shopping around for the best prices. This has resulted in consumers becoming highly disillusioned at the mere mention of the word ‘insurance’.

While motor insurance prices have been fluctuating wildly for a litany of reasons, this is simply not true as regards for other types of insurance. House insurance is actually quite flat at the moment, most consumers are currently paying the exact same premium year after year or maybe even a little more. As a result of the difficulty of getting cheaper motor insurance, consumers are tending to stay where they are for home insurance rather than go through a similar ordeal. Jonathan reckons that somewhere in the region of 8 out of 10 customers could get their home insurance policies for a cheaper price. It can pay to do a little homework on what type of policy you are taking out and how to shave off any unnecessary extras.

Over Or Under Valuing Your Property

One mistake people frequently make when taking out home insurance policies is not valuing their property appropriately. Homeowners commonly take out insurance policies for the market value of a house as opposed to the rebuild cost. Particularly in the greater Dublin area, houses may have a market value of for example €400,000 whereas the rebuild cost might only be €250,000. This could lead to a policy costing more than you need it to. With contents insurance on the other hand, contents insurance policy holders can sometimes be caught by over valuing contents. For example if you bought an expensive T.V or laptop a few years ago it may have decreased significantly in value and insurers will only pay out for the perceived value of items.

Optional Extras

Most insurance products will come with a range of extras. These may commonly include; high value items when outside of the home, accidental damage, legal expenses cover etc. Jonathan refers to these as “Rolls-Royce policies”. While they do provide the most comprehensive, maximum levels of cover, most people only need to cover themselves against the highest impact events such as storm, fire and theft.


As with any product or service you should always try and access the best prices and discounts. If you take out a motor insurance policy and a home insurance policy or a home insurance and a business insurance policy with the same company you will most likely be eligible for a discount. The best way to find out what discounts might apply to you is to contact a broker who has access to multiple insurance products.

Terms and Conditions

Insurance is a financial service and as a result you might end up with an absolute mountain of fine print and policy documents. It is very important to comb through the fine print and the nitty-gritty of your policy. This is to make sure that your policy is exactly what you think it is.


The excess on an insurance policy is the amount you will have to pay yourself in the event you are making a claim. The standard excess on home insurance policies is typically between €125 and €500. Some insurers will give you the option to increase your excess and thus lower your premium. Make sure you know exactly what the insurer will pay out as many will have a higher excess in place for different types of claims.

Making A Claim

Make sure you are fully aware of all the connotations making a claim may have on your premium, or rather future premiums. Sometimes the increase in premiums or the loss of no claims bonuses may outweigh the value of making a claim. This can be particularly true with contents insurance in the event of theft or damage. Weigh up exactly what making a claim will have on your future premium prices before pulling the trigger.

Shopping around is always the best option when trying to get the best value for your home insurance. The easiest way to do this is to get a broker to do the legwork for you as they will have access to a wide range of insurance products.

Source: The Sunday Times

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