4 things to do before you call for First Time Buyer Home Insurance – AA Ireland

Image showing a woman and man hugging, holding a set of keys in front of a "Sold" sign

In the excitement of buying a new home, buying home insurance might not be the sexiest thing on the to-do list, but our call agents tell us that when people do call in a panic, they really don’t know what they are asking for.

We spoke to Sarah Gleeson from our Home Insurance Team and she gave us her top tips on what to do before you pick up the phone for a home insurance quote as a First Time Buyer. 

1. Know your Building Sum Insured.

This is the cost to rebuild your home in the event of it being destroyed; it is not the market value of the home, which is often very different. In order to calculate this, you should log on to The Society of Chartered Surveyors in Ireland and here you will find a helpful tool as well as guides to calculate this. 

2. Make sure to be aware of the value of your contents

“If you move out, anything that you bring with you is your contents,” Sarah explains. “If you turn the house upside down, anything that falls out is the contents. All the fitted kitchens and bathrooms are in the rebuild, so these do not count as contents. We find on average that that contents insurance can vary from between €25,000 – €60,000, but it depends on what they have in their house. Things like diamond engagement rings come in as specified items to be covered outside of the home too, but usually, people don’t know and you have to explain it to them.” 

We have more advice on home contents insurance here.

3. Be aware of non-standard construction on the property.

Be aware of the details of any non-standard construction. An example of this would be a flat roof, but there are several other criteria that would qualify your property as a non-standard construction. Materials are also considered non-standard – this includes homes made from eco materials, such as log cabins or houses with thatched roofs. “If a flat roof, for example, is over a certain percentage we might have to go back to the underwriter and they will often want to know what material is used for it, so you will need to know that too,” explains Sarah. 

4. Know about your locks and alarm.

“If you have an alarm, we have to ask if the alarm was fitted by an approved NSAI installer (you can be subject to a discount if so). And we will often ask if the house has a multi-locking system, but you won’t usually find that out until you get the keys,” she adds. “A multi-locking system is a five-lever mortice deadlock and if you look at the keys and see five little notches in the key it is a five-lever.” 

For more information on AA Home Insuranceclick here.