Do you need shed insurance?

Do you need shed insurance?

Thefts increase by a quarter in the summer – but millions leave their sheds and garages under-insured, households that keep belongings in their sheds and garages are being warned to check their insurance policies, as many don’t offer cover on items kept in outbuildings.

 

  • Sheds are a prime target because their security is often overlooked

  • Sheds and garages are not necessarily covered by home contents insurance

  • Valuable items such as bikes and ride-on lawnmowers may not be covered

 

 Do you need shed insurance?

Thefts from gardens and outbuildings tend to rise by around a quarter in the summer months, according to consumer watchdog Which?.

Sheds are a prime target for theft because they often contain expensive equipment or tools, but security is often overlooked making them much easier to break into than a house or flat.

But even so, households often don’t realise that their belongings are not necessarily insured as part of their home cover.

Which? looked at 38 standard home contents insurance policies and found that of theses eight didn’t cover thefts worth more than £2,500 from outbuildings.

Many insurers also have a ‘single article limit’, which could mean that if expensive items such as costly bikes or ride-on lawnmowers are stolen, the owner may not receive the full value.

Which? also warned that as people are increasingly using their offices as sheds, there is a greater risk of theft of computers and other technology.

As many as 342 laptops, 387 computers and 447 phones were stolen between 2012 and 2014 in the London area alone.

A recent survey of Which? members found that one in ten have more than £2,000 of equipment stored in their sheds and garages, even though they might not have ample cover.

Which? gardening editor Ceri Thomas, said: ‘With thefts from sheds on the rise in summer months, people should check whether their home contents insurance covers outbuildings and whether they need to cover items held outside the home separately.

In the meantime, our advice is to keep sheds locked at all times, fit an alarm system and a padlock.

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