Home insurance at Christmas and other celebrations

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Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, and the last thing you want to worry about is your home insurance. Make sure you're covered with our guide

When you’ve shelled out for a Christmas to remember, extra cover on your home insurance can help protect the indulgences you’ve bought to mark the occasions.

We’ve called ours ‘Celebration Cover’ to include more occasions, but other insurers offer it specifically for Christmas and simply name it ‘Christmas Cover’. We’ve put together this quick guide to help you decide if this extra cover will benefit you. Insuring extravagant gifts.

If you’re investing in a crackerjack gift worth over £1,000 for a loved-one, you can declare it on your policy as a specified item.

Some items, like designer handbags for instance, don’t carry the same risk so you can’t specify them. If you’re not sure whether an expensive item needs to be listed on your policy, check with your insurer.

You’ll usually have to declare your gift as soon you as purchase it to be covered. Though, with Admiral Platinum home insurance, it will automatically be insured for 15 days after purchase under the New Purchases extra cover.

If the loved-one in question lives at the address insured, you will probably want to declare it anyway and cover the item for the duration of their stay. Examples of common high-value gifts include jewellery, watches and high-end laptop computers.

Even if you’re not spending that much, you may also want the item insured. Some policies cover personal possessions that you wear or carry about your person (including jewellery and watches usually up to £1,000), even while you’re away from the house. And until you physically give the gift to the recipient, it counts as a personal possession of your own.

Admiral Platinum policies provide £2,000 personal possessions cover as standard – there is the option to extend this to £10,000.

Insurance for guests’ possessions

Celebrations mean friends and family, and if you’ve got people staying for a few days their possessions may be insured too. You’ll need to check this with your insurer, but Admiral Gold and Admiral Platinum contents insurance policies cover up to £1,000 as standard.

Freezer food

The deep-freezer is a great way to save money at Christmas and other celebration times, especially if you’ve managed to buy up party foods and joints of meat when they’re on offer.

Many policies protect the contents of your freezer, including every Admiral contents insurance policy. The amount covered varies depending on what policy you’ve purchased, and is outlined in your documents.

Gifts of cash

Cash is an easy gift, and while securely transferring money electronically is easier than ever, there’s no escaping that feel-good moment of opening a card to see Her Majesty staring back at you.

With this in mind, money in your home is insured up to the limits shown in your policy documents all year round. This limit is anywhere between £250 and £1,000, depending on which level of contents insurance you have. We would always recommend banking cash as quickly as possible, because the insured limit does not increase around celebration times for most policies.

Where to store gifts

Celebration times, and Christmas in particular, provide rich pickings for thieves. It’s not a good idea to store gifts under the tree in the run up to the big day if this is in plain view; if you’re living above ground level or your tree is situated away from prying eyes, this is less of a concern.

Of course, families with youngsters will want to keep gifts hidden from view, with each location presenting its own relative risks.

Lofts are great at deterring thieves, but be careful where you place your footing; we deal with several cases each year where people have fallen through ceilings retrieving either gifts or decorations.

Outbuildings are less secure, and while you may be insured by your policy for theft from them provided they are securely locked, it’s unlikely to extend to high-risk items (excluding sports equipment). It depends on your level of cover, so be sure to check your policy documents.

Many high-risk items are exactly the kind of thing people like to give at Christmas. If you’ve purchased jewellery, computers, collectibles, musical instruments or anything else that falls under the definition (which should be laid out in the policy booklet), you should keep these in the main house.

And of course, there’s the wardrobes. But inquisitive little minds do have a tendency to go exploring, so store gifts out of arm’s reach to reduce the risk of injury and breakage from falling gifts.

Increasing your cover limits longer-term

You may want to increase the total value of your insured contents after the celebrations are over, especially if you’ve received lots of gifts (for instance, after getting married). In this case, you may be able to amend your policy mid-term. This is simple and is likely to result in an increase in your premiums, which you may decide is worth paying for the added peace of mind.

Our Celebration Cover

If you’ve taken out an Admiral Gold or Admiral Platinum contents insurance policy, it includes the extra Celebration cover. This automatically increases the value of the contents insured at your property by £5,000 for Admiral Gold policyholders, and £10,000 for Admiral Platinum policyholders.

What counts as a celebration?

Here at Admiral we know that there are countless reasons to celebrate throughout the year. With this in mind, our cover insures:

  • Religious festivals
  • Your wedding day
  • The birth of your child

Anything that falls outside this, like birthdays, anniversaries, housewarmings, plus religious celebrations not linked to festival dates (such as christenings and bah mitzvahs), are not covered.

If you’ve got a wedding or birth coming up, you don’t need to tell us in advance for the cover to be effective, but we may ask you to provide some sort of evidence in the event of a claim (like a venue booking receipt or a doctor’s note).

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