Are plants covered by home & contents insurance?

Collage of a woman relaxing among her plant babies.

Maybe you’re a green witch or humble plant guardian. Either way, your prized collection of blooms, succulents, and ferns deserves utmost protection and care. But are they covered by home and contents insurance?

Let’s find out.

Insurance cover for plants

Collage of a woman meditating among leaves.

As with most things insurance (and life in general) the simplest answer is, “It depends.”

Home insurance, often broken up as building and contents insurance, is a policy you can take out covering accidental or malicious damage to your property and/or belongings. Building insurance covers the physical structures (i.e. your house and any garden sheds) while contents insurance covers your removable valuables, like white goods, furniture, antique ceramic pugs, and so forth. 

Contents insurance alone is usually best for renters since they don’t own their actual homes, while building & contents insurance (sometimes called combined home insurance) is ideal for homeowners. For maximum cover, you’ll usually want to compare comprehensive home insurance policies, too. 

So how do plants fit into all of this? Let’s break it down like a root breaking down nutrients.

Does home insurance cover gardens?

Collage of cartoon plants and flowers.

Greenery can be a large and lovely part of your home’s aesthetic, whether it’s overhanging eucalypts, delicate shrubberies, or a path of petunias. But what if it all gets washed away by a flood or turned into tinder by a bushfire? Or perhaps the neighbourhood nuisance decides to spray-paint something obscene on your lawn.

Luckily, if any of the above were the cause of the damage, your comprehensive home insurance policy will likely cover repairs or replacements. This could also apply to any backyard tools like hoes or whipper-snippers damaged by an insurable event. Hurray!

However, there are plenty of exclusions to be mindful of, too, so be sure to read your policy’s product disclosure statement (PDS) to check your coverage. 

In general, claims stemming from poor maintenance aren’t covered by even the most comprehensive home insurance policies. Negligence is a big no-go for insurance because providers can argue you took on unnecessary risk by neglecting your property, and therefore you’re at fault. 

So if your gum tree collapses onto your roof because it wasn’t properly trimmed, or your foundation shifts because a nasty root grows under it, you’ll likely have to pay out of pocket. 

RELATED: Does home insurance cover that? 9 things you may not know about your policy

As a rule of (green) thumb, keep your home in good condition to give any future claims a chance of success. If your garden was damaged as a result of an insured event like fire, flooding, theft, or vandalism and your policy offers cover, you’re well placed to claim the damage.

If not, heed this ancient proverb: if a tree falls in a forest and it wasn’t insured…

Does home insurance cover indoor plants?

Collage of sunflowers growing out of a hand.

Indoor potted plants are another ballgame entirely. Since the portable nature of pots means they technically count as belongings – not the building – your best bet of insuring your plant babies is a good old fashioned contents insurance policy.

Comprehensive contents insurance policies will usually include specific limits for valuable items in your home – and pot plants can be heckin’ valuable. If these items get damaged in an insured event like fire, theft, or accidental damage, then you could be covered for replacement costs. 

However, when it comes to insuring valuable items, specific sub-limits may apply. So while a policy may cover $5,000 in replacements, this sub-limit will combine with other valuable items in your home that might be a bigger financial pain to replace (like appliances or TVs). You may have to pick favourites, or do some serious comparing of contents insurance policies

To give your plant babies maximum happiness, keep them in pots and on the premises, as backyard pots may not be covered by your contents insurance policy. Also water them, give them plenty of sun, and sprinkle with some delicious nutrients in their soil. (Pro-tip: epsom bath salts make surprisingly good fertilisers!) Preparation, after all, is the best form of insurance.

Thinking of safeguarding your habitat? Compare home insurance policies below. You can also read up on some green money solutions for your home and finances.

Compare building & contents insurance policies - rates updated daily

Search promoted home insurance below. Advertiser disclosure. Important information on terms, conditions and sub-limits.
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    Optional ExtraUp To 25% Of Building Sum Insured
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    For a limited time, sign up for combined home and contents insurance to get 10% off (T&Cs apply). Australia Post’s combined home building and contents insurance, both your home and belongings will be covered in case of fire, theft, extreme weather (including flooding) and natural disasters.

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    Underinsurance protection
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* Terms, conditions, exclusions, limits and sub-limits may apply to any of the insurance products shown on the Mozo website. These terms, conditions, exclusions, limits and sub-limits could affect the level of benefits and cover available under any of the insurance products shown on the Mozo website. Please refer to the relevant Product Disclosure Statement and the Target Market Determination on the provider's website for further information before making any decisions about an insurance product.

^See information about the Mozo Experts Choice Home Insurance Awards

FAQs about plants and home insurance

Can I insure rare plants?

Some contents insurance policies allow you to increase sub-limits for specific valuable items, such as rare plants. This may come with a higher price tag attached, and limits my still apply (for instance, you may only be able to insurance a couple items up tp $5,000 each). 

How do you value a plant or tree for insurance purposes?

Valuing your property and belongings can be quite tricky, but there are a few good rules of thumb. You can consider the size, age, and species of the plant or tree for starters, or ask your property valuator to appraise it. If it's a plant you bought personally, include any receipts in your considerations. Your insurance provider can also assist you in putting a price tag on your plants and gardens, since this can be a necessary part of determining your home and contents coverage anyway.

Does home insurance cover yard drainage issues?

Damage plumbing and pipes can be covered by home insurance, but only if the damage is the result of an insurable event like a storm, flood, or fire. If the damage is due to negligence or poor maintenance, then you may not be able to claim the repairs.

If the drainage issues occur because of the physical landscape of your yard, such as because of awkward ditches, poor landscaping, or degraded retaining walls, then coverage may be highly varied or excluded altogether. Consult your provider and read the PDS to check the terms and conditions of your policy.