What can invalidate your home insurance?

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A row of terraced houses

From your most prized possessions to your nearest and dearest, your home holds almost everything you value most, which is why knowing exactly what you’re covered for is so important.

To make sure you’re not left uncovered we’ve put together this handy list of things which could result in your policy being invalidated:

Leaving your home unoccupied

Admiral Home Insurance covers your unoccupied home for 60 days during your policy term; you need to let us know if you think you’ll exceed this.

We define an unoccupied home as one which isn’t lived in by the policyholder or their family members for longer than the ‘days unoccupied limit’ on your Home policy schedule. The standard ‘days unoccupied limit’ is on your policy schedule.

Failing to keep your home heated could result in burst pipes followed by a leak or even flooding in the home.

Not getting in touch when something changes

Keeping us informed of any changes to your information or changes to your home during the policy term is essential.

It might seem obvious but changing your address is something you definitely need to tell us about.

Likewise, any alterations carried out to your property or any criminal convictions you receive during the policy term are both things you need to tell us about. Failure to notify us of alterations or changes could mean we’re unable to pay your claim, reduce the amount you’re able to claim for, or even result in your policy being declared void.

If you’ve told us you have an intruder alarm, you must tell us immediately if you decide to stop using it.

Make sure to check the ‘keeping your policy up to date’ section of the policy booklets for a full list of things you need to tell us about and when.

Keeping quiet about an incident (even the really small ones)

You need to tell us straight away if any incident occurs, even if you don’t intend to make a claim. Not telling us about minor damage could affect claims in the future if we are unaware of the initial incident.

Using your home for business

In some cases you are allowed to use your home for business use, our guide on Home insurance for business use explains exactly what’s covered.

However, if you fail to tell us what your property is used for when you start your policy, or if you start using the property for business mid-term and don’t let us know you may not be covered.

You're covered for clerical use and you don't need to tell us about this. You'll need to tell us about anything more. Our Gold and Platinum insurance policies provide cover for office equipment used for business purposes.

We would not be able to offer cover to certain occupations, for example people who sell items and have customers visit their home to purchase.

Getting a lodger

Finding an affordable way to own your own home can be tough which is why many people decide to take on a lodger but you do need to inform us if you intend to do so.

Your policy could be invalidated if you fail to inform us you have taken on a lodger.

Having your home renovated

There’s always something which needs doing at home, whether it’s a lick of paint in the hallway or something major like an extension to the kitchen, most homes could be described as a work in progress.

But, you always need to let us know before work starts if you intend to have any building work or renovations done to your home. Think things like attic or basement conversions and structural alterations rather than routine maintenance or decoration.

Not telling us about planned renovations could result in your policy being declared void.

Underinsuring your contents

You should always ensure you have the right level of insurance. Underinsurance is an issue, and we want you to have the correct amount of cover.

It’s important to provide accurate values to ensure you are sufficiently covered in the event of a claim. You can use our helpful Contents Calculator for guidance.

Any high-risk items worth more than £2,000 need to be specified in order to be covered for their full value, these include:

  • any collectible articles which are rare or unusual
  • audio visual, photographic or sporting equipment
  • computers, laptops, tablets and notebooks
  • jewellery, watches or pearls
  • pictures, prints or works of art
  • precious metals or stones
  • stamp, coin or other collections
  • musical instruments
  • bikes over the value of £350

Home insurance is incredibly complex and every policy is different, so make sure to read your policy books carefully and contact us if you need any help.

Flexible home insurance from Admiral