Among the most important things to sort when you’re moving home is your contents insurance. You want all of your possessions to be covered once they’re installed in the new location; if they’re not, and you suffer a fire or theft, then you might find yourself without cover – and without any possessions! 

As well as changing your address with your insurer, it’s also worth thinking about whether your possessions are covered while they’re in transit from one location to the next. In some cases, your insurer might cover your possessions as standard while they’re moving; in other cases, it’s an optional extra.

Do I need to get my stuff moved professionally?

The majority of insurers will only cover your move if you have experienced professionals, or at least a man with a van, take care of it. When homeowners try to move items themselves, the risk of things breaking increases. This is especially so if you’re moving stuff alone, when you should really be doing so with the help of another person.

If you’re just moving items a short distance – from one end of a street to another, for example, then you might be tempted to move possessions in small batches, possibly on foot, and thereby cut down on the amount of moving that you’ll be doing entirely. But there’s a limit to this approach: large items like televisions, fridges and wardrobes will need more space – which is where a professional mover comes in handy. Not only is a breakage more likely when you spend a little, it’ll also be covered by your insurer.

Many removal companies have their own insurance which will cover your stuff – but bear in mind that the level of cover here is typically very low. Find out exactly what’s being covered before you agree to the move. Note also that high-value items like jewellery might not be covered at all – so be sure that you’ve stowed them somewhere safe, or give them to a specialist to take care of.

Will I be charged extra?

If your insurer doesn’t cover items while they’re in transit, then you might be asked to pay a premium to get the extra cover. This is often modestly priced, at around £30. Against the total value of the items you’re moving, this isn’t all that much.Don’t forget that you might be stung by an excess if you come to make a claim, so make sure that you know what it is before you invest. In marginal cases where the value of your stuff isn’t that high, you might decide that it’s more sensible to go uninsured and take the risk. After all, if you intend on replacing many of your more expensive items the moment you move in, and they have little resale value, then the cost of insurance is more difficult to justify.