What is accidental damage cover?

Article contents

Someone spilling a coffee on a laptop.

Accidental damage protects against the unexpected and is available to buy on contents, buildings or combined home insurance. We define an accident as indeliberate, unexpected and visible loss or damage.

Read on to find out what accidental damage cover includes and if it’s right for you.

Do I need accidental damage cover?

It depends if you want cover for accidental damage to your home and its contents. 

While you might be careful around the home, it’s worth considering if you have children or lots of visitors.

To work out if it’s worth it, calculate the cost issues like repairing your home after a DIY disaster or replacing a work surface damaged by a hot pan. 

Accidental damage cover can be added to a home insurance policy or included as standard. 

How much does accidental damage cover cost?

The cost of accidental damage varies between insurers and depends on the level of cover. It's covered within the premium cost if your policy includes it as standard.

If you want to add it on, it’s rarely a set price like other home insurance add-ons like home emergency cover.

What does accidental damage cover?

Buildings and contents insurance includes different types of accidental damage. Each insurer has a way of splitting the cover. 

Below, we’ll talk generally but mainly explain how we split our cover options.

Examples of accidental damage for buildings insurance

Accidental damage claims for buildings are less common but are often larger and more complicated. We have two cover levels of accidental damage for buildings insurance:

  1. Accidental breakage of glass and sanitary fixtures – including windows, sinks, fixed ceramic hobs, etc
  2. Buildings – accidental damage to your home's structure, windows, fixtures and fittings in your kitchen and bathrooms

Below are some situations we’d likely cover:

  • hammering a stray nail through a water pipe
  • windows smashed by a football
  • a perfume bottle falling and cracking your bathroom sink

Examples of accidental damage for contents insurance

We have three cover levels of accidental damage for contents insurance:

  1. Audio-visual equipment – accidental damage in your home to electric items that aren’t portable like TVs
  2. Mirrors or glass – accidental breakage of mirrors and internal glass in your home
  3. Contents – accidental damage to your home’s contents 

Contents accidental damage includes items such as:

  • paintings 
  • jewellery
  • sofas
  • mattresses 
  • rugs

One of the most common claims is for carpet damage – whether by spilt wine or toppled paint tins. Some other examples include:

  • knocking your TV off its stand
  • breaking your favourite bracelet
  • burning your carpet with straighteners

For Admiral Home Insurance customers

Admiral Platinum – includes full buildings and/or contents accidental damage cover as standard

Admiral Gold – includes accidental damage cover for external glass and internal sanitary fittings (like toilets and wash basins), mirrors and internal glass (like ceramic hobs and glass-top tables), and non-portable audiovisual equipment (like TVs and gaming consoles)

Admiral – accidental damage cover is optional

An upgrade to full buildings and contents accidental damage cover is optional.

Some insurers exclude any damage caused by your pets; however, we cover accidents like your excitable puppy knocking your TV off its stand. 

Please check your policy book for more information as pet-related claims are more complicated than other family members.

What usually isn’t covered?

Depending on the type of insurance and level of cover, we also don’t cover damage:

  • caused deliberately (intentionally pouring a glass of water on your laptop)
  • because of wear and tear (worn-out carpets on the stairs)
  • caused by pets chewing, tearing, vomiting, scratching, or fouling
  • caused while your home is unfurnished or unoccupied
  • caused by poor workmanship

Check the policy book for a full list of exclusions. 

What about damage outside of my home?

We have another type of insurance called personal possessions cover that protects items you wear or carry with you outside of your home like: 

  • laptops
  • tablets
  • portable games consoles
  • jewellery and watches

If any of the above is worth over £1,000, you may need to add it as a specified item.

Damage caused by guests

We cover accidental damage even if a family member or someone who doesn’t live in your home causes it. 

However, home insurance doesn’t cover you if a paying guest causes damage. You need landlord insurance (for long-term tenants). 

There’s also Host insurance for short-term guests and other overnight stayers, like Airbnb guests.

How do I make an accidental damage claim?

Read your policy documents to see if we cover your claim. You can view them on MyAccount

Remember to check your excess. If it’s higher than the cost of the damage, we can’t process the claim, and you’ll need to pay for it.

If you’re confident that the situation is covered, get in touch via our make a claim page or on MyAccount

Flexible home insurance from Admiral