The beginners guide to insurance: what do you actually need?

The beginners guide to insurance: what do you actually need? – words Alan Woods

You can be insured for absolutely anything these days, and with good reason! Insurance saves you in a crisis whether it’s your home, pet, car or even yourself – it’s there to use when the time comes.

But do you actually need the cover you’re paying for? Insurance policies can be difficult to understand and complicated to work out if you actually need the extra cover you’re paying for. Our beginners guide to insurance is designed to help you work it all out.

 

Home Insurance

This means your home and usually the contents within. You’ll be asked for an estimated value of the entire contents of your home so include things like valuable pieces of jewellery, paintings, that sort of thing. With belongings like expensive road bikes you may be asked if you want to insure them separately – this is because these days some bikes are worth way over £3000 so need extra cover. If you have anything like this, that you think will need extra insurance because of it’s monetary value, then it’s best you get in touch with the insurance company and talk to them about adding specific items to the policy. Your home insurance may also be more because you live close to an area that is renowned for flooding – always pay the extra if this is the case because flood damage can be brutal. If you have some of your home contents in storage you may also need to insure that in case of damage to the storage area, so make sure you look into your options in detail.

Vehicle Insurance

Depending on where you live, drive to and from and who you are, your vehicle insurance can fluctuate massively. If you live in an area where car theft is high then that will affect your insurance. Similarly, if you’re an 18 year old male, with a brand new car, having just passed your test then your insurance will be higher because according to statistics – you’re the group most likely to have accidents. So, vehicle insurance is a bit of a minefield. Just make sure you have cover where your car is parked at night and during the day, where you work and that the contents of the car are included in this too – just in case you leave your handbag in the car and it’s broken into. It’s also a good idea to check that if something unfortunately does happen, then your insurance provider will sort out a temporary car replacement while it’s all being sorted out.

Travel Insurance

Do you need travel insurance? It’s sensible – it covers the cost of medical care while you’re on holiday, so could save you thousands of pounds. If you’re paying for travel insurance it needs to cover medical expenses and getting you home – whether that’s earlier than you had planned or later – which means alterations to flights and lots of extra costs. Travel insurance is relatively inexpensive considering it could save a life so it is definitely worth investing in before a holiday. If you’re going skiing or on an adventure sports holiday make sure you contact your insurance provider, you may not be covered and will have to take out a different policy because there’s a higher risk of an accident.

Pet Insurance

A lot of people take the risk with pets and save the money, they would spend on insurance, in a separate bank account in case the day comes. Unfortunately the small amount that you spend on insurance isn’t going to cover vets fees. Realistically an emergency that requires veterinary attention is going to cost you well over one thousand pounds but if you’re insured it’s just a premium of usually around £50 – saving you hundreds! As pets are the ones we love the most it’s important you get them covered, just make sure they’re covered for any pre-existing conditions as this is usually left out. Worth thinking about if you decide to adopt a puppy.

The beginners guide to insurance: what do you actually need? – words Alan Woods