Most people over 50 would probably agree that there are a number of benefits to reaching the half-a-century milestone. A major financial benefit is that the cost of insurance generally drops for nearly all types of cover, including one type that most people need; home insurance.
Why is Over 50s home insurance often cheaper?
Fortunately for the over 50s, they’re seen as less of a risk by insurers. They usually live more stable lives than other age groups and are more careful with their possessions and the property they live in.
Statistics show that insurers are right in their thinking. The simple fact is that the over 50s make fewer insurance claims, and when they do claim the average cost to the insurer per claim is less, and they’re also more honest about the circumstances behind the claim.
Wider insurance choice
Not only that, but the over 50s can access a number of insurance deals which are exclusive to their age group, as well as those deals available to anyone looking for home cover.
Over 50s specialist insurers such as RIAS and Saga nearly always offer discounts and ‘golden hellos’ in the form of cash lump sums to their chosen target market.
Policy terms are often better for over 50s
And it’s not just the cost of cover that can be cheaper. It’s often the case that preferential home insurance policy terms and conditions apply which are more generous that for those below 50.
The areas where cover is often enhanced and which are generally of the greatest benefit usually include:
- Contents cover – A higher level of cover for possessions offered as standard.
- Buildings cover – Again, higher maximum claim limits for damage to a buildings structure are often included as standard.
- Greater allowance for holidays – In recognition that older people may travel more, the standard time limit for which a home can be empty before home insurance becomes invalid is often greater, up to 6 weeks or more, for the over 50s.
- Security – Higher discounts may be available to the over 50s for making their homes more secure with better locks, alarms and other security measures.
General home cover needs for the over 50s
While the cost of cover might be less, the terms more generous, and the choice a little greater, the cover requirements of the over 50s are pretty much the same as for anyone else.
Essentially, there are two types of home insurance which are usually needed, one type to cover the building and the other its contents (i.e. your possessions):
- Buildings insurance – Anyone who owns their own home should financially protect themselves from damage or theft occurring to the structure of the property (preferably including outbuildings such as garages and greenhouses, and garden structures such as garden walls). And if you have a mortgage, buildings insurance is a legal requirement of the home loan.
- Contents insurance – It’s more likely that someone who’s older will have amassed a larger amount of possessions over the years. If you’re over 50 there’s a good chance this might include some valuable inherited items such as antiques and family heirlooms too. Contents insurance gives you the peace of mind that comes with knowing that if just about anything you own is damaged or stolen, you’re financially covered.
How best to buy your cover
While buildings and contents insurance can be bought as totally separate policies, it’s nearly always the most cost-effective to buy them together under one general home insurance policy.
As always, shop around for quotes, making sure you compare like-for-like policies (e.g. use the same cover requirements, including value of possessions and cost of re-building your home) for each quote. It can also be a good idea to use an insurance broker as they can make sure you have the correct cover, explain anything you’re unsure of and also access deals you might not be able to on comparison websites.
What other cover elements might be needed?
Most policies offer buildings and contents cover as standard, with varying cover levels and exclusions. However, there are ‘add ons’ usually available which you can have included, usually for an additional cost. Those you might want to consider include:
- Accidental damage cover – For those that want their possessions protecting from damage and loss caused by them.
- Away from home cover – If you want your possessions protected when you’re away from your property, you’ll need to add ‘away from home’ to a policy.
- Legal insurance – For those who want the potential to call on legal representation and advice.
- Home emergency cover – Emergencies in the home, such as a boiler breaking down in the middle of winter, can be costly and difficult to fix. Home emergency cover ensures you’re protected and have swift access to help.
- Home worker insurance (Also known as ‘all-risks’ cover) – Many over 50s work part-time (or even full-time) from a home office. Home worker insurance is available as most standard cover doesn’t allow for claims when what are deemed to be business activities at taking place.