Stuff. We’ve all got it. Stuff we want. Stuff we need. Stuff we don’t need. But when it comes to protecting it through contents insurance, lots of people just switch off.
In fact, the majority of those who rent their home don’t purchase contents insurance at all. In the UK the rental market is increasing – due to expand to almost 5.8 million homes by 2021 – and yet nearly two-thirds of private tenants don't currently insure their possessions. We believe that, in no small part, this is because insurance is seen as a hassle to buy and there’s a real lack of trust in the industry as a whole. And that’s exactly what we’ve set out to change.
In this post, we’ve done our best to summarise what contents insurance is, how it works and why – for us – it was the right place to begin on our journey to transform insurance for the better.
What is contents insurance?
People sometimes confuse contents insurance with buildings insurance. Buildings insurance protects the physical structure of your home; contents insurance protects what’s inside it.
If you think about turning your house upside down, all the stuff that falls out is your 'contents'.
If there’s a fire; if your home is flooded, or you’re the victim of a burglary, our contents insurance covers the cost of providing like-for-like replacements for your damaged, lost or stolen possessions. Stuff like furniture, white goods, appliances (think hairdryer, straighteners, electric razor), to sporting equipment, clothes, shoes. Check out exactly what’s covered and what’s not.
People often only realise how important contents insurance is when they are unfortunate enough to need it. But try asking yourself, how much would it cost to replace all my stuff? The likely answer is thousands; maybe even tens of thousands. It’s a scary thought, but contents insurance can – we hope – give you some peace of mind. So you don’t have to spend your time thinking scary thoughts and can get on with more fun stuff instead!
How much should I insure my stuff for?
The simple answer? You should insure it for what it’s worth. Of course, the higher the value of your stuff the higher your insurance premiums will be (the price you pay for having nice stuff!) But it’s important to make sure that if something were to happen to all of your possessions you’d be covered for the full amount needed to replace them.
Some people find it helps to calculate room by room, and don’t forget to look inside all your cupboards and wardrobes. People tend to underestimate what it would cost to replace all their clothes, shoes and accessories for instance – we Brits reportedly spend over £1,000 a year on clothing.
We know this process can be challenging and as a result, many people find themselves either under or over insured. That’s why, rather than simply offering blanket cover, we encourage our users to itemise their belongings and build an inventory through our app. We’re working away behind the scenes on some clever digital tools to help you, and soon you’ll be able to upload photos of your treasured possessions as well as receipts and proof of ownership. We’ll let you know as soon as we have any developments to share.
Do I have to get contents insurance?
No, you don’t have to get contents insurance. Again, people often confuse it with buildings insurance, which is compulsory if you’re a homeowner with a mortgage. Hopefully, though, we’ve explained why we think it’s important – and why we want to remove the obstacles that are stopping people from buying it in the first place.
At Wrisk, our mission is to make buying, maintaining and claiming on insurance a simple, transparent and personal experience for our customers, and part of how we plan to do that is by keeping everything in one place – contents, home, car, travel, business – all bought and managed through one app. (Our slightly geeky name for this idea is “macroinsurance”.)
But as a startup, you have to start somewhere, and where better to start than with an area as vital, but with as low adoption as content insurance?
We hope that if we can dramatically improve the experience for customers and build trust; if we can make the whole process much easier – perhaps, dare we say it, even fun – then we can change people’s attitudes towards contents insurance. So that – should the worst happen – we’ll be there, and everyone else can get on with the business of living.