Home insurance explained

13 December 2018

Understanding home insurance can seem complicated but it doesn’t need to be. We’ve broken down our cover into some easy-to-understand sections to help you understand what we can cover and our limits.

Garages and outbuildings

Our buildings insurance includes cover for outbuildings including sheds and garages provided they are included in the buildings value you give us. The contents section of your home insurance will also cover contents in these buildings (excluding motor vehicles) provided they are properly secured when not in use (a padlock on your shed or a lock on your garage door). 

Terms to be aware of:

  • Let us know if you will be away for more than 60 days - if the home is left unoccupied for more than 60 days, we can no longer cover; theft, vandalism and damage caused by escape of water.
  • We have a limit of £5,000 on claims for theft and attempted theft. 

Personal belongings insurance

Our home contents insurance section will provide cover for your personal possessions while they are in your home. You can extend this cover to include items you take away from home anywhere in the world, for up to 90 days at any one time.
  • Up to £3,500 of cover in any period of insurance.
Terms to be aware of:
  • We make a deduction for wear and tear of clothing.
  • You should make us aware of any items you would like to insure which are worth more than £3,500.

Valuables and jewellery

Our home insurance policy includes cover for valuables such as jewellery, gold or silver, clocks, watches, furs, works of art, stamps, coins or medal collections whilst in your home.
Although jewellery insurance is included in your policy as standard, you still need to think about what your valuables might be worth. Unique or particularly valuable items may need extra insurance or special terms.
Standard cover includes:
  • Up to £10,000 for 1 or 2 bedroom properties 
  • Up to £15,000 for 3 bedroom properties 
  • Up to £20,000 for 4 or 5 bedroom properties. 
You should let us know if any one item or collection is worth £3,500 or more. If you have chosen your own sums insured for your contents, you should let us know if any one item or collections comes to more than 35% of your total contents sum insured. 
It’s always best to keep proof of purchase, photographs and any legal documents which help to prove ownership of these items in case of a claim.
We have a preferred supplier network which includes professional valuation service. Ecclesiastical customers receive a discount.   

Office equipment

Home office equipment such as audio and visual electronic equipment, keyboards, monitors, printers and photocopiers can be covered up to £10,000 in total. 
If you are running a business from your home, or storing business stock on the premises, it is unlikely that standard home insurance will be able to provide adequate cover. Let us know if you are unsure whether cover would apply for your circumstances. 

Garden contents insurance

For those with green fingers, don’t forget the items you want to protect in your garden. You might have hundreds of pounds worth of garden trees, plants and shrubs which could be damaged or stolen.
We cover individual items in the garden up to £250 up to a total of £2,500. 
Just be aware - we exclude damage caused by storm or flood, frost, weight of snow or damage by animals.

Cover for bicycles

We provide up to £750 cover for any one pedal cycle provided you do your best to make it secure. 
Terms to be aware of:
You should not leave your pedal cycle simply in your garden, this will not be covered by our insurance. Unattended bicycles should be stored indoors or securely locked to a permanent fixture.

For full terms and conditions, features and exclusions, please read our home insurance policy wording or call our team on 0345 7773322.


We are applying automatic enhancements with immediate effect to all home insurance policies during this period to try to provide additional peace of mind. Learn more about temporary cover changes
We can transcribe your documentation, letters and schedules using the following alternative formats:
  • Braille 
  • Large print 
  • Audio 
  • Tactile 
  • Audiobook
If you would like us to arrange this for you, please contact our Customer Services Team on 0345 777 3322.
If you have opted for this cover then it is provided under the Portable items section of our policy. This will cover any items that you take away from your home and on holiday so can cover mobile phones (handset only), laptops, camera equipment or jewellery.
Any items that you take away from your home that are valued over £3,500 will need to be specified on the policy individually. Cover is provided for your portable items anywhere in the world up to 90 days in total during the period of insurance
Yes. If you carry out some voluntary work for the church, then we are able to offer a discount for this.
If you lose the keys to your home or they are stolen or there is accidental damage to the locks of the outside doors or windows we will pay for reasonable and necessary costs of:
(a) gaining access to your home
(b) repairing or replacing the locks
The most we will pay for any one claim is £1,000.
Yes, all apart from household linen and clothing.
The contents in your freezer will be covered up to your contents sum insured.
Yes. The contents in these buildings will be automatically covered up to £5,000
The fences at your property will be covered under this insurance but we will only be able to pay a claim for damage to any fence if the main building, garage or outbuilding is damaged at the same time.
No. We are able to offer new business quotations to all members of the public as well as clergy members.
We do offer a no claims bonus on our policy to reward customers who are claim free. We can offer a maximum of five years no claims discount but if a claim is made on the policy this is reduced to nil.
For every year you then remain claim free, you will be able to build this back up to the maximum of five years.
If the work taking place is in excess of £25,000, please complete our Buildings Work Questionnaire and send it back to us.
If the work taking place will be less than £25,000, please contact us to let us know and allow us to note your policy accordingly.
On request we can provide cover under your contents policy for small boats (measuring less than 5 meters and not having a top speed over 15 knots), craft, surfboard or a sailboard.  
If you require cover please contact our team on 0345 777 3322.
We can offer a comprehensive policy to cover your let property but this is not a specific commercial landlord’s policy.  
We do have some automatic exclusions such as Accidental Damage, Theft or attempted theft and Vandalism or malicious acts but there is an option to add this cover if required.
We will cover the reasonable and necessary costs incurred with our consent to: locate the source of leaking water or oil from any fixed water or heating system in Your Home; and repair any damage caused in locating the source of the leak. 
The most we will pay is £5,000 for each leak.
Visit the Association of British Insurers website and this will ask you some questions to determine the rebuild value of your property.
If you need to do this then you will need to either call us direct on 0345 777 3322, write a letter or send an email to household@ecclesiastical.com.
Yes. We have Home Emergency cover included under your household policy. DAS Legal Expenses Insurance Company Limited handle these claims on our behalf and you can use this for anything from roof damage, plumbing and drainage, your main heating system, the domestic power supply, the toilet unit, home security to vermin.
If you need to make a claim under this section of the policy, please call DAS on 0345 268 8469.
Using your property to carry out clerical duties in relation to your work is automatically covered. 
We also provide cover for your computers and their accessories, office equipment and office furniture, used only for clerical and administrative use up to £10,000. We do not provide any cover for your business stock.
If you have visitors to your property or if there is any other form of business use, please contact us and we will be happy to discuss this with you. 
If your bike is under £750 it is automatically covered under the policy.  If your bike is worth more than £750 then this will need to be specified on the policy individually and will need to be locked to a permanent fixture whilst being kept in an outbuilding.
If you take your bike away from the home you will need to ensure you have opted for the Portable items element of the policy and your bike will need to be locked to a permanent fixture when it is unattended.  No cover is provided if you are using your bike while racing.
Yes. You have up to £1,000 personal money cover included on the policy. Personal money means bank notes and coins that are not part of a collection, cheques, postal orders, bank drafts, travel tickets, traveller’s cheques, postage stamps, savings stamps and certificates and premium bonds.
The cover also applies for up to 90 days in any one period of insurance, elsewhere in the world.
There is liability cover included on your policy automatically up to a limit of £2,000,000.
If the subsidence has happened in the past 15 years then, unfortunately, we will be unable to offer a quotation for your property.
If the subsidence occurred over 15 years ago, then before we are able to offer a quotation, we would need to see an up-to-date structural engineer’s report that has been completed within the last three years. Once this has been received, we will then decide if we are able to offer a quotation for your property.
We can still offer you a quotation if your property is listed. We will need to know which Grade the building is.
Yes. We have a 60 day ruling on the policy. After 60 days the cover on the policy may change and so we will need to know if the property will be unoccupied.
We define valuables as jewellery and precious metals, clocks and watches, furs, pictures and works of art, stamp, coin and medal collections.

We will pay 50% of the cost of replacing undamaged items which form part of:

  • a pair;
  • a set, collection or suite; or
  • a matching or uniform design, nature or colour,
with an item that has suffered from damage that is covered under the buildings or contents section of the policy.

If your home cannot be lived in because of damage covered by your policy, we will pay 20% of the sum insured to help you with reasonable and necessary costs of your temporary accommodation (see policy document for full details).

An excess is the first monetary amount that you will pay towards a claim. Under our policies the excesses are £1,000 for subsidence, £250 for any escape of water or oil claim and £75 for any other standard claim. We do have the option to add on voluntary excesses which would be added to the already existing excesses.
The permanent structures within the boundaries of your home including any garages or outbuildings used only for domestic purposes and home office use, permanent fixtures and fittings including statues and fountains, hot tubs permanently fixed to the ground, wind turbines and solar panels fixed to the buildings or fixed to the ground, swimming pools, tennis courts, paths, drives, terraces, patios, walls, fences, hedges and gates as long as these are all within the boundaries of the land belonging to your property.
Household goods, furniture, furnishings, clothing, personal belongings and valuables all belonging to you or for which you are legally responsible.
Standard cover will cover your property and/or contents for the perils noted in the policy document, e.g. fire, earthquake, storm, flood and subsidence.
Accidental damage cover will provide cover for your property and/or contents for any damage caused accidently, e.g. spilling paint onto a carpet or putting a hammer through a wall whilst carrying out some DIY.
Home insurance policies are designed to cover sudden and unexpected identifiable events such as fire or flooding to your home. 
Wear and tear, however, naturally happens to all properties and possessions over time, and as such you will find wear and tear is not covered on most insurance policies. 
The cost of maintaining your property or contents or replacing items due to wear and tear is not covered by our policy. 
There are a few simple things you can do to prevent wear and tear causing you a problem: 
  • Check your property regularly 
  • Ensure you carry out routine maintenance 
  • Fix problems as soon as they arise.
This will not reduce the premium in any way; however your property may be in an area that requires you to meet certain security requirements. We will be able to tell you this.
If your son/daughter stays at your property during university breaks then they will be covered for their contents. The most we will pay for contents whilst in the student accommodation is £5,000 in any one period of insurance. No cover is provided for your son/daughters contents in the student accommodation for loss or damage caused by theft to items away from your home unless force is used to get into or out of a building.
As long as you have Portable items cover under your policy then any items your son/daughter takes away from their student accommodation will be covered. The Portable items sum insured will need to be sufficient to cover the whole family. Please note that if there is more than one child at university then the £5,000 is split between them.