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Press Office

Homeowners & renters could be undervaluing their contents insurance by £115bn

UK households may be underestimating the value of the contents of their home by billions of pounds, with many admitting their possessions are at risk.

Admiral Home Insurance surveyed 1,000 adults in the UK, asking them to estimate the value of all contents in their home. The average figure came out at £18,333 – £16,667 less than the average contents value of £35,000 *. Across the UK that works out at a total of £115bn** worth of contents that could be undervalued.

While two-thirds of respondents (67%) typically update their contents insurance on an annual basis, just under a quarter (23%) said they didn’t think it was necessary to increase their insurance level regularly, for example when they buy a high-value item such as jewellery or home technology.

Contents are defined as everything from a wardrobe of clothes, to pots and pans, to any gadgets owned. Anything not fixed down in the home is covered by contents insurance.

This large disparity between the perceived contents value and actual value becomes even more alarming as more than a third (36%) revealed their contents were at risk in some way, whether from burglary or flooding.

Home contents estimates are higher by men than women, with men averaging £19,820 vs women at £16,953 – but both figures are dramatically lower than the national average - meaning precious possessions could be under-covered.

Top five most valuable items (by average estimate)

ITEM

ESTIMATED VALUE

Tech: computers and games consoles

£600

Clothes

£580

Tech: radios and TVs

£568

Beds and bedding

£559

Tech: phones and tablets

£508

When it comes to property types, people living in a rented, shared flat are the least likely to have insurance, more than half (58%) of flat renters said their contents weren’t covered at all. They also undervalued their contents by the most at just £7,717 – almost £30,000 under the national average – despite the fact they’re the most likely to feel their contents are especially at risk of theft or damage (58%).