What is home insurance?

Home insurance protects your home and its belongings. It can cover the cost of repairing or rebuilding your home if it's damaged by things like fire, storm or flood. And it can cover the cost of replacing the things in your home if they're stolen, or repairing or replacing them if they're damaged.

There are three main types of home insurance:

  • Buildings insurance. This covers the structure of your home and includes fixtures and fittings.
  • Contents insurance. This covers your personal items while they are inside your home.
  • Combined. Both types of cover in one policy.

How does home insurance work?

Home insurance helps cover the cost if something happens to your home or belongings. You pay us an amount each month or once a year, so if something goes wrong, we might be able to help put it right.  The amount you pay will depend on the level of cover you need:

  • Buildings insurance covers you if something happens to your home. For example, if there’s a fire, it can help cover the cost of repairing or rebuilding your home.
  • Contents insurance covers you if something happens to your things. For example, if your home has been broken into, and they’re stolen, it can cover the cost of replacing them. Or if your things are damaged in a flood, it can cover the cost of repairing or replacing them.

Home insurance isn’t for things like the upkeep of your home or for routine decorating. It’s also not there to cover you for ‘wear and tear’.

What does home insurance cover?

Home insurance is made up of Buildings and Contents cover. If you own your home, it can be a good idea to have both types of cover as a combined policy, so you know everything is covered in one place.

Limits, terms and exclusion apply to all home insurance policies. It’s important that you check your policy documents to see what is and isn’t covered.

Buildings insurance

Buildings insurance covers the structure of your home and its fixtures and fittings. It includes the roof and walls, and fitted kitchens and bathrooms.

Outside the home, buildings insurance covers its outbuildings like garages and sheds, and drains and pipes if you're responsible for them.

It covers the cost of rebuilding or repairing your home if it's damaged by events such as:

  • fire
  • storms
  • theft or attempted theft
  • vandalism
  • subsidence
  • moving objects including vehicles, falling trees or lamp posts.

Contents insurance

Contents insurance covers the things inside your home. These are things you'd normally take with you if you moved house.

It can cover things like:

  • freestanding furniture, like wardrobes and cabinets
  • beds
  • sofas
  • TVs
  • video game consoles.

Contents insurance covers you against the cost of repairing damage caused by events such as:

  • fire
  • floods
  • storms
  • theft.

What kind of home insurance cover do you need?

The kind of cover you need depends on whether you own or rent your home:

  • If you are a homeowner, then combined buildings and contents insurance covers both your home and the things in it.
  • If you rent, you'll only need contents insurance. This will cover items owned by you. Your landlord will arrange buildings insurance.

How much does home insurance cost?

How much your home insurance costs depends on lots of factors. For example, if you live near a river that floods often, or there are lots of burglaries In your area you home insurance could cost more. The following are things we take into account when calculating your home insurance costs and how much you need to pay:

  • Where you live
  • When your home was built
  • Previous claims
  • Value of your contents

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Home insurance: FAQs

Does home insurance cover rising damp?

No, most standard home insurance policies do not cover rising damp. This would be considered general wear and tear.

Are garages covered by home insurance?

Garages and sheds are sometimes included by Buildings Insurance. But you may need extra cover if they are not attached to your home. With Halifax Home Insurance Select, outbuildings are covered as standard.

How long do home insurance claims stay on record?

A claim will stay on record for up to 15 years after the policy has been cancelled.

Are new homes cheaper to insure?

Yes, new builds can be cheaper to insure. New build homes have modern windows and doors which can make them more secure.

Halifax Home Insurance Select underwritten by Lloyds Bank General Insurance Limited.

Halifax is a division of Bank of Scotland plc. Registered in Scotland No. SC327000. Registered Office: The Mound, Edinburgh EH1 1YZ. Bank of Scotland plc is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority under registration number 169628.