How much will my home insurance cost? It’s a common question, but not one that’s automatically easy to answer. An insurer will take a wide variety of factors into account when working out what your premium will be, not only about the house but also about you and your individual circumstances[1].

So, what plays a part in the price of your home insurance? And what steps can you take to lower the cost of your cover?

Your address

One of the first things an insurer will consider when pricing up your premium is the precise location of your home. An insurer can tell a lot just from your postcode.

They will look at things like crime rates, for example; if the area has a higher-than-average burglary rate, then you may find your premium is higher[2].

How much cover do you need?

The exact amount of cover you need will play a part in how much your policy costs. It may seem obvious, but if you are insuring an expensive home, or large sums of contents, then your policy will cost more[1].

What type of property are you insuring?

The exact type of property that you’re looking to insure is an important factor, too; detached homes present different risk levels to semi-detached homes or apartments.

Insurers may also want to know about how much of your roof is flat. If a large portion of a roof is flat, there may be issues with water pooling and subsequent damage, resulting in higher premiums[3].

The materials used in the building of the property will play a part, too[4]. For example, if your home has a thatched roof, then it is more at risk of fire damage and you’re more likely to pay a higher premium[5].

Security

Many insurers will ask how secure your property is. This will include things like what locks you have fitted on your doors and windows, and whether there is an alarm in place.

You can also make use of technology to increase the level of security, thanks to a range of smart devices that can be installed in your home and can help you keep an eye on your property, even if you’re out and about.

As a rule of thumb, the more secure your home is, the lower your premium is likely to be[6]. And of course, the better the security you have in place, the less likely it is that you will need to make a claim[7].

Flood risk

The likelihood of your home being caught up in a flood will also play a part in the pricing of your home insurance: if your home is located in an at-risk area, then your premium may be higher[8]. It’s worth noting that you may still be able to arrange cover for homes with a history of flooding thanks to a scheme called Flood Re, which was set up to help households who live in a flood risk area find affordable home insurance[9].

Have you claimed before?

Your claims history is taken into account, too. Those who have made claims in the past few years will be likely to pay more for their cover[10].

Your circumstances

Insurers will ask a lot of questions about you as a homeowner or tenant when pricing up your policy, as your circumstances will affect how likely you may be to make a claim.

For example, your premium may be affected by the amount of time you need to spend away from the home[10].

What can you do to make sure you pay what you should for your home insurance?

With all those factors in mind, one step you can take to keep your home insurance cover as cost-effective as possible is to ensure you have the right amount of cover in place.

For buildings insurance, this means calculating how much it would cost to rebuild your home accurately. That could be done either by using the Building Cost Information Service’s house rebuilding cost calculator.

For contents insurance, you will need to make sure you provide an accurate estimate of what it would cost to replace the possessions in your home. Read our guide on valuing home contents to learn about how you can do this. Providing an accurate estimate of your contents’ costs means you won’t risk being underinsured[11] or paying more than you need to for your cover.

Go to Solved to find out more about how to protect your home.