Get cheap insurance for your gadgets
Many of us carry around a variety of different gadgets on a daily basis. Here's how to ensure they are adequately protected.
Does your home insurance cover your gadget?
Your home insurance policy will offer some level of cover for your gadgets, and this cover will be offered as part of your contents insurance policy.
Home insurance will only cover your gadgets if anything happens to them at home – unless you’ve opted for cover for each device outside the home too.
Claiming on your home insurance policy for your gadgets can make your home insurance premiums more expensive in the future.
How will your home insurance protect your gadget?
Your home contents insurance policy can help to cover the cost of repairing or replacing your gadget if the damage or loss is caused by:
Theft and attempted theft
Lightning and storm
Earthquakes and more
You’ll need to read the policy documents to see the full list of events that are covered as each policy differs. The policy will also list any claims where contents insurance won’t cover the cost.
Accidental damage will usually have to be added to your contents insurance policy to help cover your gadgets against spillage, cracked screens and more.
How do you add your gadget to your home insurance?
If your gadget is worth less than £350 (if it’s a laptop) or less than £1,000 (if it’s a mobile phone or other device), you won’t need to add the gadget individually to your contents insurance policy. Instead, include its value in your total contents value estimate to make sure it’s covered at home.
You can also include cover for more than one gadget or device by increasing the total contents value of the house to protect the family’s devices at home.
If a laptop is worth more than £350, or a mobile phone or another device is worth more than £1,000, you’ll need to add each device separately to your contents insurance policy. This is because they’re considered to be high value items, so you’ll need to name each one to make sure they’re covered.
Cover for your gadget away from home
You can add an extra level of cover to your contents insurance policy to protect your gadgets outside of the home (this level of cover is sometimes called ‘Personal Belongings/Possession’ or ‘All Risks’ cover).
Adding cover away from home helps to protect your device(s) against any physical damage or theft that might happen when you’re out and about. It can also cover your device in case it becomes lost.
Always read the policy wording to make sure you know what will and won’t be covered under ‘Personal Belongings/Possession’ or ‘All Risks’ protection because insurers might offer different levels of cover.
You’ll need to say whether you want to insure your high value items away from home when you add them to the contents insurance policy individually. Cover for your gadgets away from home will increase the cost of your overall contents insurance.
There will typically be a maximum amount you can claim for high value devices away from home on your home insurance policy, so it’s always a good idea to read the policy wording in full so you know what will be covered.
There might also be a limit to how much you can claim depending on the type of damage that’s happened – for example, there might be a £100 limit per claim for damage to gadget screens and glass casings.
Insuring your gadget away from home can mean that your gadget will only be covered if it’s away from home and in the UK.
Some home insurance providers may offer protection for your gadgets abroad for a limited number of days – if not, you’ll need to take out cover for your gadget as part of your travel insurance policy.
Standard home insurance policies won’t tend to protect your gadget against accidental damage – if a standard home insurance policy offers basic accidental damage cover then this generally won’t apply for phones or electrical goods that aren’t TVs or desktop computers.
To cover your phone for accidental damage that happens at home, you’ll need to add accidental damage cover to your contents insurance policy. This will either need to be added as standard accidental damage cover or extra accidental damage cover, depending on whether the insurer covers electrical devices on their standard home insurance policy.
This will then help to cover your laptop if you spill water on it while you’re at home, or if you drop your phone at home and the screen cracks.
For accidental damage cover that happens to your gadget outside the home, you’ll need ‘Personal Belongings/Possessions’ or ‘All Risks’ cover for outside the home.
If you’ve added a high value item to your contents insurance policy as a personal belonging/possession, this should have accidental damage cover included for that item.
Adding accidental damage cover to your policy also offers cover for your other contents, as well as your gadgets.
How do you claim for your gadget on your home insurance?
You’ll be asked for evidence of any lost or damaged gadgets you want to claim for, including purchase receipts if you have them. You’ll also need your insurance policy number to claim on your home insurance.
If your gadgets have been stolen, it’s best to contact the police first. They will give you a crime reference number, and you can use this to make a claim for a stolen gadget on your home contents insurance policy.
Should you claim on your home insurance for your gadgets?
If the excess you’d pay for claiming for your gadget is about the same as the cost to you to repair or replace the damaged item, you may be better off paying for it yourself. This also means you avoid the risk of your home insurance costs increasing because of a claim.
If you can’t afford the cost of repair or replacement, check that your home insurance policy will cover that type of claim and the amount you can claim.
Even if your home insurance policy won’t cover the full cost of your gadget repairs or replacement, the amount your insurer will pay out could help to go towards the cost.
Things to keep in mind…
If you’re thinking about adding your gadgets to your home insurance then there are a few things to keep in mind:
You’ll only be able to claim for theft or attempted theft if there are signs of forced entry or violence
If you’ve said your item is a certain make or model but turns out to be a counterfeit, you won’t be able to claim
If you add your gadget to your contents insurance policy, there might be limitations to how much you can claim depending on the type of damage that’s happened – for example, you might have a £100 limit per claim for damage to gadget screens and glass casings
The more claims you make for gadgets on your home insurance, the more expensive your renewal policy will be
If you’ve got a new, more expensive gadget, update your contents insurance policy’s total value and the personal possessions that are listed to make sure you’re still covered
Insuring your gadget on your home insurance versus gadget insurance
Gadget insurance is an insurance policy that’s specifically designed to protect your gadget – or multiple gadgets. Because of this, it can offer more cover for your gadget(s) than a home insurance policy.
Gadget covered against…
yes (added cost)
yes(can be an added cost)
yes (if part of personal belongings)
Fraudulent call use
Wear and tear
The level of cover offered as part of standard policies and additional levels of cover can differ depending on the insurer. It’s always best to check policy wordings and compare the level of cover offered by each policy type.
Some gadget insurance providers allow an unlimited amount to be claimed for your gadget/gadgets, so you may be able to claim more through this policy than with home insurance.
If you didn’t want to risk increasing the cost of your home insurance policy by claiming for your gadget, a gadget insurance policy might be a better option.
Making a claim on your gadget insurance policy won’t increase the cost of any future gadget insurance policies you take out with a new provider as you don’t need to include information about any claims you’ve made in the past. Your existing insurer could increase the cost of your insurance at renewal if you’ve already claimed for that gadget - but because most gadget insurance providers won’t insure a gadget that’s over 36 months-old, this isn’t normally an issue.
You’ll usually have to pay an excess to claim on either your gadget insurance or your home insurance, but the excess fee you pay to claim on your gadget insurance policy can be lower.
Comparing home insurance policies that cover your gadget
Comparing home insurance policies that offer cover for your gadget(s) under a contents insurance policy can help to give you peace of mind that your devices will be protected. MoneySuperMarket’s home insurance comparison tool helps you find the right level of cover for your gadgets and contents.
You can add any laptops worth over £350 separately, plus any electrical items worth over £1,000 each. You’ll add these as a separate items with their values.
You can then let us know whether you want insurance for any personal possessions you’ll be taking out with you from this list (this might be your phone), and the total value of any high value possessions you’ll be taking outside of the home to make sure they’re covered.
When it comes to giving an estimate of the cost to replace all the contents in your home, be sure to include any gadgets under £1,000 and any laptops under £350 to make sure they’re also covered.
The amount of cover each home contents insurance policy offers for your gadgets will differ, so it’s always good to compare home insurance policies against each other and gadget-specific policies to help make sure you get the right level of cover for your devices.