Is moving insurance worth it?

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Moving house is stressful. You've got to pack everything, relocate it all to your new home, and get all your furniture and belongings organised once they're there. You also have to update your address and get your family, pets, and yourself used to your new surroundings. All while managing any changes to your schedule that need to be made due to your new location.

One thing that is often touted as making this process easier is moving insurance. But is it actually worth it?

The answer depends on your unique circumstances, so we've put together this guide to help you make the best decision for your needs.

What is moving insurance?

It can be helpful to think of moving insurance as a sort of travel insurance, only it's designed for your belongings, not yourself.

This type of cover is designed to protect you in the event of damage or loss of your belongings while they're moving about, much like how your travel insurance would protect you against having to pay massive hospital bills in a foreign country. You could also look at it as protection against having to fork out thousands to book a new holiday if something prevents you from taking your vacation as intended through no fault of your own.

In other words, moving insurance is simply cover against the unexpected. It can't guarantee that your belongings will stay safe, but it can help prevent financial stress if there's an unfortunate event and something does happen.

In many cases, your belongings are valued (either by yourself or the provider) and you'll be offered a rate of cover in line with what the total replacement cost is expected to be. Repairs are generally offered if possible, but this will depend on the item in question.

It's important to remember that there are multiple levels of cover available. So make sure you look into each policy available before making your decision.

What does moving insurance cover?

The level of cover that you have through your moving insurance will depend entirely on your policy. Different providers cover different belongings and events, so it always pays to check the fine print.

As a general rule, your basics such as furniture, white goods and standard electronics will be covered by most policies. Having said that, specialty equipment, such as lighting for a home photography studio or, in some cases, medical equipment, will only be covered under certain policy options.

Unexpected storage for your items is almost always considered an extra. So you'll also want to check whether you're covered for this when taking out your policy. Needing to find a last-minute place for your belongings to stay can be quite costly, so protection is recommended on longer moves.

It is important to note that valuables such as jewellery are often excluded from moving insurance policies. For this reason, we recommend keeping these valuables separate, and transporting them yourself in order to ensure their safety. While all care is obviously taken by reputable moving companies, mistakes and accidents can happen, so being able to keep a close eye on things is always best.

How much does moving insurance cost?

The cost of moving insurance will vary depending on the coverage that you require, as well as the likelihood of damage or loss occurring. It also depends on where you purchase it.

For example, there are some removalist companies that are qualified to offer financial services. This allows you to get insurance directly from them. However, this will commonly differ in price and inclusions in comparison to purchasing extra cover through your home and contents insurance or taking out cover from a dedicated moving insurer.

As a general rule, smaller moves should usually come in under the $1000 mark. This does depend on the distance being travelled, as well as the value of your goods, so should be considered a rough guide.

Is moving covered by my home and contents insurance policy?

This depends on the specifics of your policy. While some contents insurance policies will still cover your possessions during transit, many others will not. The best way to know for sure is to read your policy documents and/or check with your insurer to see if you're covered while moving.

It is important to note that even policies that do cover your belongings while moving may impose conditions. These can include coverage at a reduced rate, or only under certain circumstances, so be sure to double-check before making any decisions.

For example, in many cases, home and contents policies that include cover for your belongings during your move will only do so if you're using a professional mover. Others may only cover transit, meaning if something gets broken moving between your home and the moving truck, you're out of luck.

What if I'm moving overseas?

If you're moving overseas you usually won't be covered once your items leave the country. This is regardless of what your home and contents insurance policy states about covering transit.

In this instance, you will be best off taking out specific removalist insurance from a company that specialises in overseas moves.

You may also be able to obtain cover from your overseas insurance. However, this would depend on the specifics of your policy. In this case, you would need to do the same due diligence as you would when checking whether your contents insurance covers you for moves within Australia.

Final word

While moving insurance can certainly help put your mind at ease while your belongings are in transit, you'll need to do a cost vs benefit analysis before committing to a product.

We also strongly suggest checking with your home and contents provider about whether there is cover included within your policy—and if so, what level—as there's no point paying for full coverage if all you need is a top-up.

Moving insurance can be a budget-friendly way to get some peace of mind while everything is on its way to your new home. And for many, it's worth it purely for this reason. Having said that, you should always consider which option, if any, is best for your specific situation and needs.

Jessica Jones
Written by
Jessica Jones
Jess has been writing educational content for almost ten years with a focus on lifestyle content. She loves coffee, dogs and all things fitness, and can often be found with her nose buried in a book and her music blaring through her earphones.

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