There Are A Lot Of Things To Look Out For When Considering Removal insurance
If you are going to move home, one of the most important things is to ensure that your belongings are covered in case of loss or damage. Many people assume that the removal company that they choose will have an insurance policy, and they don’t consider it any further.
This can be an extremely foolhardy approach, because, while removals companies will carry a certain amount of insurance, the policies will vary enormously. This is why it is very important to look at the level of cover that is provided and at what is and what is not included. Certainly, removals companies have to insure themselves in the course of their business and will therefore advertise that they are “fully insured”. This may be the case, but what it can mean is that the removal company itself is insured. It doesn’t necessarily mean that you, the customer, is insured! Or if you are, there can be all sorts of limitations and restrictions.
Usually, a removal company will talk to their insurance company about the risks involved in their day to day operations. They are sensible enough to know that when you are handling other peoples’ goods, accidents can and do happen. So what they will then do is to pay a premium to the insurance company to cover those particular risks. That premium, as far as the removal company is concerned, is a part of the cost of doing business and it has to be built into their charges. So the fee that they quote you includes a certain proportion of their premium.
However, here is something to consider: a removal company cannot possibly know the value of everything that each of their customers may own and for which they could be responsible when in their possession. So what they do is build into their terms and conditions a limited level of liability. Now that limit may be nowhere near enough to cover loss or damage to some of your items.
In another sense, the fact that they limit their liability may actually be of benefit to you if you don’t have items of high value, because they can keep their charges lower since they don’t have to allow for a more expensive premium.
Of course, another factor is that a removal company cannot possibly know from one day to the next what it will be asked to move. So if you happen to own a rare antique bookcase, or an expensive original oil painting, it is almost certain that their insurance will not cover its’ full value. What most removal companies do is to include a certain level of cover which is in their terms and conditions and then it is up to you to decide if that is sufficient, or if you want higher cover. It is most important to check this before you sign the contract.
Furthermore, you need to remember that each removal company will have its’ own terms and conditions, and that they will use terms such as limited liability, extended liability, standard liability, and so on, and that these can have different meanings according to the terms and conditions of that particular company.
Then there are other things to consider. Some insurance cover may limit the liability on an individual item, so there is a cap on the amount you can claim even if it doesn’t cover the cost of the damage or loss. Others may have an overall cap on the total amount that you can claim. Then there may be a requirement for you to prove that the company was negligent.
House moving insurance is similar in many ways to travel insurance, in that there are different levels of cover available. Two of the most common are indemnity insurance and new for old insurance. Indemnity insurance covers you for the true value of an item, taking into account its’ age and any wear and tear. New for old does what it says on the tin and allows for replacement of the item regardless of age or condition.
Despite all this, the good news is that top-up cover for house removals is not very expensive. If you are moving home, talk to us at The Insurance Broker and we will ensure that you have the right amount of cover for your individual requirements.