What does an owner's property insurance cover?

Homeowner Insurance

How to properly protect your home

  • To ensure that the dream of owning your own four walls does not end in a nightmare, you should insure your home adequately against damage.
  • The basic rule also applies to homeowners that you should only insure yourself against damage the costs of which you cannot cover on your own.
  • Which insurance you need also depends on whether you are buying or building a house and whether you want to rent out your property or live in it yourself.
  • Whether you're building a home, buying a finished property, or owning a condominium, homeowner insurance is a must for all property owners.
  • If your property is in a risk area for floods or other natural hazards, it makes sense to take out insurance against natural hazards.
  • Take out home and landowners liability insurance if you rent out a property or are a member of a community of owners. If you live in your house yourself, private liability insurance is sufficient.
  • Term life insurance helps protect the bereaved so that they can continue to repay the home loan in the event that the main breadwinner suddenly dies.
  • If you own a property with an oil tank or if your house is still under construction, you should check whether the protection of your personal liability insurance is sufficient. You may also need a water damage or builder's liability insurance.

The decision to live in your own four walls is one of the most expensive investments of a lifetime. Are you planning to buy an apartment? Or have your dream of owning your own home already come true? Anyone who owns a property should definitely remember to adequately insure one's property. We will show you which insurance you should take out as a homeowner and which unnecessary contracts you can save yourself.

What types of insurance do homeowners absolutely need?

Anyone who has invested a lot of money in their own property does not want to have to raise large sums when damage has occurred. If the house is badly damaged by a storm or if a passer-by is injured by black ice on the property, without good protection there is a risk of financial ruin. In the following section we will show you which types of insurance you as a homeowner necessarily close should.

Homeowners insurance is a must

Whether you live in your own house or apartment or rent out your property, homeowner insurance is a must for every owner. Because it protects Damage from storm, hail, fire, or tap water. The insurance covers the costs you incur as a result of the damage and pays for repairs and reconstruction.

When they build, it is worthwhile to take a look at home insurance at an early stage. It can run as fire shell insurance right from the start of construction. And initially for free. A fire shell insurance takes over if the unfinished, not yet occupied building burns down or lightning strikes. In addition to the shell itself, the insurance also covers building materials and damage caused by smoke and fire-fighting work. Once the house is ready, the fire insurance then converts to normal homeowners insurance. Only then do you usually pay contributions.

Insurance policies include compensation in many residential building tariffs grossly negligent behavior or pay significantly less. Such a case can happen quickly: a forgotten stove or a candle that has not been extinguished is sometimes enough to cause a major fire. It is therefore advisable to choose a tariff that pays even in the event of gross negligence.

In the event of damage caused by the forces of nature such as floods or landslides, the home insurance usually does not pay automatically. If your property is located in a risk area, you should therefore add protection against such natural hazards to your home insurance. You can select this - expensive, but in this case sensible - component when concluding the insurance contract.

Even if you have a Condominium you shouldn't do without homeowners insurance. In most cases, this runs proportionally through the community of owners.

Personal liability or home and landowner liability

As a house or landowner, you should also insure yourself in the event that bystanders are harmed in your property or on your property. As the owner, you are obliged to ensure that your property does not pose a threat to others.

If a passer-by is injured on the unsurfaced sidewalk in front of your house or if a rotten tree falls on the neighboring house, as the owner, you are liable for the damage. This also applies to undeveloped land. Landlords, owner associations and owners of undeveloped land therefore need house and landowner liability to protect themselves against claims for damages in such cases.

who lives in his property himself, can get this Save items. In this case, the costs for injuries to third parties or damage to their property are covered by private liability. Everyone should have it.

For real estate loans: term life insurance

Anyone who builds or buys a house is burdened with high debts. When you need to pay off a large home loan, you should start thinking about how to get your home loan Protect relatives in the event of death.

Term life insurance ensures that the bereaved are not left sitting on a mountain of debt if the main breadwinner dies and a salary is insufficient to service the loan. To the Securing a home loan a model is suitable in which the sum insured falls in step with the residual debt of the loan agreement. Unmarried couples can also protect each other. In this case, both partners need their own contract.

More on this in the advice on term life insurance

  • Families with a single earner or a real estate loan need protection in the event of death.
  • We recommend Hannoversche, Huk24, Europa and Cosmosdirekt. You should always compare the latter with a second provider in order to avoid price outliers.

To the advisor

For home builders: builders liability

If you are building a house, you should bear in mind that, as the builder, you are liable for everything that happens on the construction site. This also applies if you do not even lend a hand, but instead instruct others to do the work.

Good private liability insurance also covers Risks on the construction site from - but usually only up to a certain construction cost, around 100,000 or 200,000 euros. If you only want to carry out minor work such as an extension or renovation on your property, you are in many cases adequately protected by private liability. Large construction projects, on the other hand, are not always covered.

Therefore, check your liability contract to see the amount up to which construction projects are insured. If you build yourself, the limit may be lower. If the costs of your construction project exceed the value stated in the contract, you need separate builder's liability insurance. It is best to close this already before construction begins from. Because you are already liable from the time you sign a contract with an architect or construction company.

For oil tank owners: water damage liability

If you are heating your property with oil, you should consider that oil big damages can cause if it gets into the groundwater or a flowing water. Many private liability insurances cover costs caused by one Leak in the oil tank of the home.

In the private liability insurance “Klassik-Garant Exklusiv” of the VHV, which we recommend, heating oil tanks are also insured. The “Simply Better Plus” tariff from liability insurance only insures a heating oil tank in owner-occupied properties. Oil tanks are not included in the “Prestige” tariff of the Bayerische. In many cases, landlords and owner associations need separate liability for water damage.

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Which insurance can be useful?

Not all insurance is a must, but some can make sense in individual cases. In the following section we will introduce you to a range of insurance policies that depending on the situation erecommendable are.

Protect expensive inventory with home contents insurance

Many advisors consider household contents insurance to be one of the absolutely necessary insurances. Whether or not such protection makes sense depends on how expensive it is to own your apartment or house.

Think about how much one New purchase of your household items would cost. Would you be able to re-purchase important furniture, appliances and items if they were stolen in a break-in or destroyed in a fire? If you can answer this question in the affirmative, you do not need to insure your household effects. On the other hand, if you have invested a lot of money in your facility, you should protect your property. Home insurance pays for damage to your inventory Burglary, fire, tap water, storms and hail.

More on this in the household contents insurance guide

  • You should have this insurance if you cannot replace your facility at your own expense after a fire or burglary.
  • Portal recommended by us: Mr-Money

To the advisor

For builders: construction insurance and fire shell insurance

Construction insurance is one good complement to builder liability. She pays if on yours Construction site unforeseen damage arise - for example through storms, construction or material defects and vandalism. You can also insure materials against theft, but only if they are already permanently installed.

You only need construction insurance when you actually start building. Compare different offers, as these differ significantly in terms of price and the amount of the insured costs.

However, the construction insurance does not cover all possible damage. Fire damage to the shell, Lightning strikes or explosions can be insured separately with fire shell insurance.

In some residential building insurance, fire protection for the shell is included free of charge. If you take out home insurance before the house starts to be built, some providers will not cost you anything to have fire insurance during the construction phase. As soon as the house is ready, the home insurance kicks in and you have to pay premiums.

Which insurance can you safely do without?

Not every home and apartment insurance is really necessary. You can do without contracts that cover damage for which you can easily pay yourself.

House and apartment cover letter

Many insurers advertise that you have a house or apartment protection letter for Claims around the house are secured. Whether it is a lost key, clogged pipes or broken radiator - the insurance company takes care of a service provider and covers its costs. What sounds good, however, often offers little performance. The letters of protection, which are usually available as an additional component to home contents insurance, often only cover costs to a very limited extent, around 500 euros per year.

Our advice: Before you get annoyed because you are left with some of the costs despite having insurance, it is better to take the search for a tradesman into your own hands and save yourself the trouble unnecessary insurance premiums.

Glass breakage insurance

The cost of a broken window pane or other damaged glass surfaces are usually bearable. If you have not installed a lot of glass in your own home, you can save yourself glass insurance as an addition to household contents insurance. It is better to put some money aside for repairs yourself every month. Some damage is covered by personal liability, residential building or household contents insurance anyway.

Max Mergenbaum

Max Mergenbaum

Max Mergenbaum writes about travel and insurance in the editorial office. He acquired the necessary tools during a traineeship at Finanztip, including an internship in the business editorial department of RBB Inforadio. Max studied politics, economics & society as well as German at the Ruhr University in Bochum. After spending a semester abroad in Canterbury, he completed his political studies at the Free University of Berlin with a master’s degree.

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