Protect your home and belongings with house and contents insurance. We explain the basics, how to save on premiums, and cover when disaster strikes.
Protecting your house and contents just got pricier. To get a snapshot of the market, we asked 17 insurers to give us quotes in five main centres for a renter looking for a contents-only policy, a couple with a standard-sized house insured for $400,000, and a family with a larger house insured for $800,000.
Our satisfaction survey also tells you which company has the most satisfied customers.
Here’s what you need to know to choose the right provider:
Do the sums. Make sure you are insured for an adequate sum if you don’t have a full replacement policy. Additional cover doesn’t cost that much more.
Shop around. Get at least two or three quotes. Our survey found you could save up to $3000.
Negotiate. If you rarely make claims and your premiums increase, ask your company for a better deal (note: most companies set a minimum premium). If you think the company is unfair at claim time, you can make a complaint to the Insurance and Financial Services Ombudsman (ifso.nz).
Investigate discounts for multiple policies. If you have both your house and contents insurance with the same insurer, you should get a discount. We strongly recommend this approach and have used it for our premium analysis.
Consider a higher excess. The excess is the amount of each claim you must pay yourself. Standard excesses range from $250 to $750 – but taking a $1000 excess can significantly cut your premium with some companies.
Ask about age discounts. Some insurers offer these starting from ages 50 or 60.
Got an alarm? Discounts for alarms usually require the alarm to be professionally installed and in some cases monitored.
Ask about other discounts. You can save money by paying your premium annually rather than monthly. Some insurance companies also allow you to take out a policy online for low-risk properties and offer a discount for doing so.
Here’s what you need to know before purchasing a policy.Read the guide