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£50bn of home contents uninsured as too many renters don’t take cover

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18/04/2019
Whether you own or rent your home, it's important to get cover for your belongings
£50bn of home contents uninsured as too many renters don’t take cover

Almost £50 billion of home contents across the UK are not insured, according to Direct Line.

Nearly 17 million (32 per cent) adults live in rented accommodation in the UK, and a worrying 43 per cent (seven million people) do not have home contents insurance.

The main reason behind this is confusion amongst renters, who believe that their contents are covered by another insurance policy (36 per cent).

The most common mistake is that renters think they are covered by their landlord’s buildings insurance policy (29 per cent), followed by another insurance policy from the landlord (26 per cent) or their parents’ home insurance policy (19 per cent).

In fact, they are not covered under their landlords’ policies, and if their home was affected by a fire, flood or if they were victim of a burglary, their contents would be at risk, leaving them to face a huge bill to replace their belongings (on average nearly £7,000).

Could you afford to replace high value items?

The highest value items that renters would need to replace are furniture, with the average household in the UK owning furniture worth around £1,621, followed by electronic (£1,342) and kitchen items (£919).

Jeremy Bristow, head of home insurance at Direct Line, said: “This research shows the true scale of the lack of insurance amongst the rental market in the UK, with over seven million renters leaving themselves at risk of losing their personal belongings and facing a huge bill at what is already an incredibly stressful time.

“No matter whether you are living in rented accommodation or if you own your property, it is important to ensure that you have the appropriate home contents and personal possessions cover in place, so that you are not left out of pocket if the worst does happen.”

Although one in seven renters (15 per cent) have had contents insurance in the past, over a quarter (28 per cent) have never had it. Young people are the most vulnerable, with half of 18-34-year olds living in rented accommodation (50 per cent) not insuring their contents, compared to just a third (32 per cent) of those over 55.

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