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A Guide to Removals Insurance

Zenyx Griffiths

Written by Reviewed by Dave Sayce

20th Jan 2022 (Last updated on 31st Aug 2022) 8 minute read

Removals insurance, also known as movers insurance, is an essential part of the moving process and a factor that can provide the most peace of mind. To cover your house move, your insurance firm may require an additional premium but this cost isn’t typically expensive. When moving house, you’re entrusting your possessions to someone else so, for many, removals insurance is worth the added price.

Some contents insurance policies will cover your possessions whilst in transit so it’s important you first speak to your current provider before comparing removals insurance. When asking your chosen removal company questions, you should also enquire about their own insurance policies and if their cover can be increased.

In this article, we will discuss what removals insurance covers, the average costs included and whether it is worth these additional fees.

This article will cover the following:
  1. What Does Removals Insurance Cover?
  2. How Much Does Removals Insurance Cost?
  3. What Insurance is Needed When Moving House?
  4. Do You Need Removals Insurance if You Have Contents Insurance?
  5. Does Home Insurance Cover Removals?
  6. Ask Your Removal Company About Their Policies and Cover
  7. Will a Removal Company’s Insurance Policy Cover Your Possessions?
  8. How Long Do You Have to Claim?
  9. Finding the Right Removal Company

What Does Removals Insurance Cover?

Removals insurance protects your furniture, furnishings and some valuables from losses and damages whilst moving house. This includes the packing, transportation, unloading and unpacking of the items covered. You can purchase a removals insurance policy from an insurance provider or perhaps even your moving company.

Whilst each policy is different, typically, you’re belongings will be covered during the move by damage caused by:

  • Vandalism or malicious acts
  • Theft or attempted theft
  • A crash with another vehicle
  • Storms or flooding
  • Fire

It’s important to read your policy thoroughly before your moving date as certain factors may not be covered. For example, some policies do not cover bikes or damage to fragile items such as china or glass or items that have not been professionally packed. Many removal companies will offer additional moving services such as packing, should you require the added protection.

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How Much Does Removals Insurance Cost?

On average, removals insurance is 10% of the removal cost. This means if your move works out as £2,000, you will have to add another £200 for the insurance.

We previously calculated the average removal cost in the UK as £1,181, meaning the additional insurance price of a move of this size would be £118.10.

However, this price can vary depending on the provider, the volume of goods being moved, accessibility to the property and the distance travelled. Fragile items such as antiques and family heirlooms will often be excluded from the standard policy, potentially increasing the cost.

If you choose to avail your insurance policy to include the items mentioned above, your insurance will likely be capped at 10% of the cost of the items covered. Therefore, if your goods have a total value of £50,000, the maximum claim would be £5,000.

Is it Worth the Cost?

This will depend on a variety of factors, such as whether you already have cover in place.

However, whilst reliable removal companies will always aim to complete a job without problems, some things are out of their control. There is no guarantee that issues won’t occur - accidents do happen and so it depends whether you want to risk the chance of the move going as smoothly as possible with no damages.

What Insurance is Needed When Moving House?

One of the most important insurance policies to have when moving house is contents insurance. Contents insurance that includes the physical removal is preferable.

You should also check what cover is included when hiring a moving company and which of your items will be protected whilst in their care. You will need to confirm whether the moving company’s cover will be included in your contract, or whether there’ll be an additional fee. It’s important to note that insuring independently can sometimes be a cheaper option so it’s important you shop around before choosing.

If you're moving abroad, you will also need to compare international removals insurance to protect your items.

If you’re using self-storage when moving, you may want to also consider taking out a specialist policy. Most storage companies will have insurance already in place to protect your belongings whilst they’re stored in their facilities. However, different companies will offer different cover. For example, some removal or storage providers do not offer cover for fire damage.

What is Storage Insurance?

If your items are not covered whilst in storage, you may want to upgrade your insurance policy or take out storage insurance. Storage insurance is a specialist insurance product that should cover your possessions, domestic or business, against any risks associated with storing them away from your property. However, you will likely only be covered whilst your goods are stored in approved storage locations.

Storage insurance will also ensure your goods are protected whilst in transit to and from the storage facility.

Do You Need Removals Insurance if You Have Contents Insurance?

Some contents insurance will already include cover for moving house so don’t forget to check your existing policy and to speak with your provider. Some policies allow cover for ‘contents to be temporarily removed from the home’, including a cap on the value of your items. This cover is typically called ‘contents in transit’.

If this is not currently included, you can ask your provider to add it to your existing policy.

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Does Home Insurance Cover Removals?

This will entirely depend on your specific home insurance policy. However, according to Money Supermarket, “42% of insurers won’t cover your move at all.”

There are 2 main types of home insurance: buildings insurance and contents insurance. These can either be bought individually or combined into one home insurance product. Whilst some companies will cover your contents whilst in transit, it will not be a definite addition and so you must read your policy thoroughly.

It’s important to note that some insurance companies will not make a pay-out on a claim if they believe your items were not professionally packed. This is why many companies will insist you use an experienced removal company. However, ‘man and van’ operations may not be covered.

Ask Your Removal Company About Their Policies and Cover

When comparing removal companies, don’t forget to check that they are fully insured before accepting the quote. Rest assured, every removal partner that enters the Compare My Move network must show proof of Goods in Transit and Public Liability insurance to ensure you and your possessions are fully covered.

When asking questions, don’t forget to read through their insurance policies to know exactly what is and isn’t covered. You should also check the time limit you will have to make a claim, should the worst occur.

It’s important to note that most home insurance policies, however, will include cover for accidental damage or loss if you use a professional removals company for the move.

What Does Limited Liability Mean?

Removal companies will not always know the exact value of the items they are moving. Whilst reputable movers will always aim to handle your items with care and respect, accidents can occur and events can happen out of their control. Due to this risk, removal companies will seek to limit their liability.

Every removal company will have their own levels of liability which can usually be found in the Terms and Conditions. Before deciding on the level of cover you require, you should check the company’s level of liability.

Will a Removal Company’s Insurance Policy Cover Your Possessions?

As part of their contract with you, most removal companies will have insurance cover. The most common and vital cover required is Goods in Transit Insurance, which covers your possessions whilst they’re being moved.

It’s advised you get your goods valued before the move. This will help you determine whether you require additional insurance cover as Goods in Transit Insurance is typically only covered for around £40-£50. If you discuss your insurance options with your chosen moving company, they may be able to increase this amount.

When comparing insurance policies, check to see if any require you to take an inventory of the items being moved and their individual values.

What is Goods in Transit Insurance for Removals?

All removal companies should be covered by Goods in Transit Insurance. It covers clients from any loss or damage to their items while they are being moved. It should be included in the final removal cost and should not result in an additional fee.

Goods in Transit Insurance should cover:

  • Theft of goods whilst in transit
  • Damage caused during transit
  • Loss of items during transit

It does not cover:

  • Storage of goods
  • Theft from an unattended or insecure vehicle
  • Damage or confiscation of goods by the government
  • Issues beyond the stated policy limits

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How Long Do You Have to Claim?

There will often be time limits on claims when dealing with removal companies and their insurers. The reason for this is to stop clients from falsifying claims by returning to the company at a later date with items that may have been damaged elsewhere.

The length of time you will have to make a claim against a removal company will depend on their policy and specific insurer. It is advised that you inspect your possessions immediately after the house move is complete to help you raise any potential issues before the deadline is over.

If you need to make a complaint against a removal company, you will also have the option of taking it further by contacting their appropriate regulatory body. For example, if the company is a member of the National Guild of Removers (NGRS), you will be able to make a formal complaint via the Removals Industry Ombudsman Scheme.

Finding the Right Removal Company

To ensure you're connected with the best removal companies in the business, complete Compare My Move’s simple online form where you’ll be matched with up to 6 verified and experienced moving companies in your local area.

For added peace of mind, know that every removal company that enters our network must show proof of both Goods in Transit and Public Liability insurance. They must also be put through our strict verification process to ensure they can work to our high standards. This not only ensures both you and your possessions are protected throughout the process, but that every partner can and will deliver quality services.

Zenyx Griffiths

Before Compare My Move, Zenyx once wrote lifestyle and entertainment articles for the online magazine, Society19 as well as news articles for Ffotogallery.

Dave Sayce

Reviewed by Dave Sayce

Owner & Managing Director, Compare My Move

Dave Sayce is the owner and managing director of Compare My Move and has over 10 years of experience in the house removals industry.

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