Home appliance insurance

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Ever considered taking out cover to protect your white goods? Here's what you need to know about home appliance insurance

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What is home appliance insurance?

Home appliance insurance protects you against the cost of repairing or replacing your home appliances if they stop working.

Do I need home appliance insurance?

Home appliances are an important part of modern life, so when they break down it makes running a home that much harder. Many appliances are expensive to repair or replace, so having cover in place if the worst should happen can protect your wallet.

Do I need appliance cover if I’m renting?

If you’re a tenant and renting a property, it’s your landlord’s responsibility to repair or replace any appliances they’ve provided. However if you’ve brought any of your own appliances it’ll be up to you to cover them.

Do I need appliance cover as a landlord?

It’s the landlord’s responsibility to ensure any appliances you provide for a property are working properly, and if they’re not then you’ll have to replace or repair them. This means an appliance insurance policy is worth considering as it’ll help you get repairs or replacements underway as quickly as possible – so long as you have the right coverage.

Are my home appliances already covered?

Your home appliances may already be covered, at least in part, by the following:

Manufacturer warranty: When you buy a brand new home appliance you’ll be covered by the initial manufacturer’s warranty if it breaks down within the specified period. This means you won’t have to pay for repairs or replacements while the warranty is active.

Home insurance: Your home insurance policy might offer cover for your appliances, which means you’d be able to claim if they were damaged as a result of fire or theft. However home insurance policies don’t always offer cover for mechanical breakdowns or accidental damage, which is where appliance insurance can fill the gaps.

Packaged bank account: Some bank accounts come with rewards or benefits such as free extended warranties for your home appliances, however keep in mind that these accounts can also charge an extra fee in return.

Consumer Rights Act 2015: The 2015 Consumer Rights Act entitles you to a refund within 30 days if your goods aren’t fit for purpose, aren’t as the manufacturer or retailer described or are of unsatisfactory quality. You’ll also be entitled to a refund within six months of the purchase for the same reasons if the retailer can’t prove otherwise.

Section 75 Consumer Credit Act: As part of the Consumer Credit Act, you’ll be entitled to a refund if an appliance is faulty, cost between £100 and £30,000, and you bought it with a credit card.

Where do I get home appliance insurance?

You’ll generally be able to take out cover for your appliances from the following options:

  • Manufacturer: You’ll be able to contact the manufacturer of the appliance directly and take out an extended warranty
  • Retailer: You’ll also be able to buy extended cover from the retailer where you bought the appliance
  • Insurer: Lastly many insurers offer specialised cover for your home appliances – and you might get a discount for insuring multiple appliances with the same provider

What does home appliance insurance cover?

The level of cover you’ll get from your home appliance insurance will depend on the provider and the policy. Most providers offer cover for the following appliances:

  • Cookers
  • Microwaves
  • Fridges
  • Freezers
  • Washing machines
  • Driers
  • Dishwashers
  • TVs
  • TV boxes
  • Music systems
  • Games consoles

Depending on the type of cover you take out, a home appliance policy should cover you for:

  • Mechanical breakdowns: If your appliance breaks down as a result of faulty parts or installation
  • Accidental damage: If it stops working because you or someone caused accidental damage
  • Emergency call-out: For the cost of getting a mechanic or engineer to come to your home in an emergency
  • Labour: For the cost of hiring a mechanic or engineer to fix your appliance
  • Spare parts: For the cost of spare parts needed to repair your appliance

What isn’t covered by home appliance insurance?

Many insurance products come with exclusions, so you might not be able to claim for the following:

  • Unnecessary call-outs: If you request an emergency call out for repairs and there is no fault with the appliance, you probably won’t be able to claim for the cost of the call-out
  • Cosmetic damage: Where the damage you’re claiming for is purely cosmetic and doesn’t affect functionality
  • Wear and tear: If the damage is a result of general wear and tear
  • Pre-existing damage: If the damage existed before you took out the policy
  • Still under warranty: If you’re still under your manufacturer’s warranty you’ll have to claim through that
  • Old appliances: If the appliance is over a certain age it may be excluded from all cover

Your policy also likely won’t cover damage caused under these circumstances:

  • If your home was empty longer than a certain period, often 30 days
  • If you used a non-authorised mechanic/engineer
  • If you caused deliberate damage to the appliance
  • If you didn’t use the appliance correctly, for instance overloading a washing machine or dishwasher
  • If you are claiming for business use, as a business insurance policy covers this

Will I get a new appliance replacement?

Insurers often have a new-for-old policy as part of their home appliance insurance, which means you’ll be given a brand-new replacement, usually market-equivalent, for the damaged appliance. However for some insurance providers this only applies if repairing the appliance is too expensive and under a certain age.

How much does home appliance insurance cost?

Insurers assess a number of factors to calculate the premiums you’ll pay for cover, including:

Your risk factor: You’ll likely have to pay higher premiums if your insurers sees you as more likely to claim – for example, if you live in an area of high crime rates or flood risk

Your appliance: Expensive appliances are likely to cost more to insure as often the parts that need replacing or repairing are pricier

Your claims history: If you’ve made previous claims on your insurance policy your premiums will go up as a result, as insurers will assume you’ll be likely to make another claim in the future

Your policy: Adding extra cover, whether it’s policy add-ons or cover for a higher amount, usually costs more in premiums

How often you pay: Paying monthly for insurance can help manage the cost as you’re spreading it over separate payments. However as you’re basically getting cover on credit, the extra cost essentially works as an interest payment

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