Homeowners warned to check insurance on expensive garden furniture

With weather improving, Shropshire homeowners have been warned that expensive garden ornaments and equipment may not be covered by traditional home insurance policies.

Martin Pitchford of Henshalls
Martin Pitchford of Henshalls

Martin Pitchford, from Henshalls Insurance Brokers in Newport and Shrewsbury, said many people were unaware that items such as garden furniture could be unprotected.

“Home and contents insurance does not always cover the cost of replacing garden furniture and outside items, and it’s vital that homeowners check the small print on their policies as they may need to pay more to upgrade their cover," he said.

“With the warmer weather on its way, many of us will be hoping to spend more time in the garden and inevitably, that means dragging the barbecue and the sun loungers out of the shed – making them highly visible targets for opportunist thieves.

“Some insurance policies will also cover items stored in sheds and greenhouses as standard, but with some firms and some structures, there could be an extra cost to add them to your cover.

“You may find that your buildings insurance will include some items that are permanently fixed to the ground too, such as hot tubs, pergolas or statues.”

Mr Pitchford said that any items stored in a shed or garden office would usually be covered for theft under a homeowner’s contents insurance.

“There is generally a limit though as to how much you’ll be able to claim, and under some policies you will only be eligible to claim if the outbuilding was locked and you can prove entry was forced.

“It may be that your cover will exclude any weather damage that’s caused by falling trees or if any plants that are planted in the ground suffer frost damage, so check your paperwork carefully.

“If you do have valuable items in your garden, ask your insurer about topping up your policy to protect them through your home insurance cover – it could well mean you’ll need to pay extra, but at least you’ll have peace of mind.”

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