Money saving tips

As well as reducing your risk of making a claim, each protective measure you take could also mean a reduction your premium.

Fire Proof Your Home – Fitting smoke alarms throughout your home and a fire extinguisher in the kitchen is not only a common sense safety tip but could also reduce your home insurance bill. For more tips on how to reduce the risk of fire, check out the Association of British Insurers website.

Install a Burglar Alarm – Burglar-proofing your home could reduce your contents insurance premium. Fit a burglar alarm or security system, preferably one that is NACOSS-approved.

Fit Secure Locks to Doors and Windows – Ensure all windows and doors have locks. Fit key-operated window locks to accessible windows and fit five-lever mortise deadlocks (British Standard BS3621) to all external doors. Fit a door chain or bar and spy-hole, and use them every time someone calls.

Ensure Doors are in Good Condition – Doors should be at least 44mm thick. If you need to replace doors and windows, get ones that are certified to British Standard BS7950 (windows) and PAS 24-1 (doors). Consider using laminated glass (for windows) as it’s much harder to break, and fit a letterbox cage to stop thieves from reaching through to open the door.

Install a Safe – Many insurers charge extra to insure high-value items. Locking expensive jewellery away in a sturdy safe will go some way to offsetting the extra home insurance cost.

Neighbourhood Watch – Join a neighbourhood watch scheme. Not only will you have more people looking out for your home, but you will also receive grass-roots tips on how to protect it. And place a sticker in your window to advertise that you’re part of a scheme.

Stay Visible – Trim back any trees higher than 10m or within 5m of your property so that your property is clearly visible from the street.

Insulate Water Pipes – Frozen pipes can spell disaster. Each year thousands of homes are damaged by water pipes that freeze and burst. When the water thaws, your property, both inside and out, can suffer flooding. Properly insulated pipes could spare you flood damage, the cost of a plumber and a higher insurance bill.

Make Fewer Claims – as with all insurance, if you have a history of making claims, this will be reflected in higher insurance premiums. Try and take preventative steps to ensure you don’t become a serial insurance claimant.