One of the essentials for many people in the UK is a good home insurance policy. According to the Association of British Insurers, 64 per cent of households have building insurance and 76 per cent have contents insurance to protect their possessions. While this is definitely something everyone should have, it should not be the be all and end all of protecting your home.
The problem is that many people are so confident in their insurance policy that they don't worry about properly securing their home. This is not the best option for your household financially, nor is it good for your family's peace of mind. Instead, people should focus more on security.
A recent example highlights this perfectly. Writing to the Telegraph, a reader referred to only as 'GW' from Cardiff described a recent case where they had over £900 worth of items stolen from their garage by a burglar. However, their insurance company turned down their claim, refusing to pay out anything.
The reason for this? The thief entered the garage via a side door that was made from rotting wood, and was therefore not secure. The insurance company argued that this showed GW had not taken reasonable care to protect their possessions, and therefore could be considered as having acted recklessly.
GW had to take the case to the Financial Ombudsman Service to eventually receive an insurance payment for what was taken, as they had put barbed wire up on the wall the thief had climbed over to reach the garage. This countered the argument that they had behaved recklessly. However, it should serve as a lesson to others.
Even though the insurer paid out in the end, GW's household still had to suffer through the stress of a burglary. This can stay with a family for a long time, making them feel unsafe in their own home. To prevent this, it is necessary to use proper security.
Home security nowadays is advanced enough not only to prevent burglars from entering your home, but also to catch them in the act if they do. Just recently a woman from Bridgend made headlines when she installed a security camera and found sinister footage of a burglar trying to break into her home.
Had that camera been connected up to SECOM's control centre, we could have immediately called the police and caught the criminal in the act, or sounded a verbal warning to scare them away.
While insurance is seen as an essential, this kind of security still isn't by many people. However, should somebody try to break into your home it will not be a great comfort to you to eventually get an insurance payment replacing the items that were stolen. It would be much better if they were never stolen in the first place.