WFH: What could affect my home insurance during coronavirus lockdown?

Despite the slight easing of social distancing restrictions, the vast majority of people across the country are still working from dining tables, home offices or even sofas. The global pandemic has shaken up not only the work-life balance, but also living arrangements and with that comes home insurance. 

For the most part, your home and contents insurance may not be affected by the lockdown measures, but there are a few instances in which it might. 

Here’s a quick wrap-up of how the current situation might affect your policy:

New equipment to work from home

If you haven’t moved since you took out your policy and you haven’t bought any new tech to see you through social distancing, then you shouldn’t have to make any changes to your home and contents insurance.

That said, if you have bought new equipment to assist you while working from home, then depending on the value of it, you may want to review your contents cover. For instance, if your policy covers you for up to $10,000, but the tech you’ve just invested in tips you over that amount, then you may want to increase the sum you’re insured for.

RELATED: 5 step tenants guide to choosing renters insurance

Business stock stored at home

If COVID-19 has you storing excess amounts of stock for your business at home, then it might be a good idea to review your home and contents insurance policy.

For that matter, if you’re now running your business out of your home, then you may want to consider whether or not you need business insurance. 

This type of insurance covers stuff like:

  • Public liability - Although it’s highly unlikely that you have anyone visiting you right now, if you do have customers or suppliers dropping by, this type of insurance can protect you in case someone injures themselves on your property.
  • Machinery breakdown - This type of insurance can cover you for equipment breakdown, including tech equipment that you rely on to run your business.
  • Business interruption - If you’re forced to press pause on business operations due to property damage or a break in, then this type of insurance can help cover any ongoing business expenses.
  • Accidental injury - Insurance to help cover medical bills, income loss and other expenses linked to certain accidental injuries.

Leaving your home unoccupied for 60 days

Usually when you take out a home and contents insurance policy there will be a clause relating to unoccupancy. So, if like a large number of younger Aussies you’ve left your rental unoccupied and shipped off to your parents’ to ride out social distancing, then you may want to look into this.

Generally, the clause requires you to inform your insurer if you are going to leave your home unoccupied for more than sixty consecutive days (the time frame may vary from policy to policy). Some insurers may even specify the approximate hours you need to be in your property each day to be covered. For example, eight out of twenty four hours.

If you do wind up leaving your home unoccupied for a few months, then you may not be covered for any loss or damage to your possessions or home.

RELATED: An essential guide to landlord insurance

Family members moving in during lockdown

On the flip side, unless your family member comes to live with you permanently, you shouldn’t have to tell your insurer if your relative has moved in temporarily during lockdown.

The only thing to be mindful of is that if your family member or friend brings valuables with them, these items will not be covered under your contents insurance. That is unless you make changes to your policy to include them.

Need help deciphering your home and contents insurance policy? Read Mozo’s home and contents insurance jargon buster for help reading your product disclosure statement.

Or if you’re searching for cover right now, check out the home and contents insurance policies on offer below.

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Search promoted home insurance below. Advertiser disclosure. Important information on terms, conditions and sub-limits.
  • Home Cover - Buildings & Contents

    QBE Home and Contents Insurance can cover your property and belongings in case of fire, storm damage, theft and more. 24/7 friendly and helpful claims service. Up to $30 million legal liability cover. Temporary accommodation costs for up to two years if your home isn’t liveable.

    Main events covered
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    Optional ExtraUp To 30% Of Buildings Sum Insured, Applied Automatically For Eligible Policies
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    replacement
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  • Home & Contents Insurance

    Get covered in just 3 minutes. Receive complimentary $250 smart home sensors to help alert you to avoidable mishaps like fire, theft & water damage. Get rewarded for being smarter, by keeping your sensors active, with a discount of up to 8% every year (T&C’s apply).

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    Monthly payments
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    No
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  • Home & Contents Insurance

    Get award-winning Home and Contents Insurance at a price you can afford from Budget Direct. Save a huge 30% on your first year’s premium when you purchase a new combined Home and Contents Insurance policy online.

    Main events covered
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    Underinsurance protection
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    Optional ExtraUp To 25% Of Building Sum Insured
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  • Home & Contents Insurance

    Your home might be your most important asset, that’s why Youi like to get to know all about it right from the start. It helps Youi to help you consider the cover that could better suit you. Youi is home insurance that’s a bit more you-shaped. Mozo People’s Choice Excellent Customer Service Home Insurance award winner in 2022.

    Main events covered
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    Monthly payments
    cost extra
    Calendar icon
    Yes
    Underinsurance protection
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    No
    New for old
    replacement
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  • Home & Contents Insurance

    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.

    Main events covered
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      Fire
    • theft
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    • storm
      Storm
    • flood
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    Monthly payments
    cost extra
    Calendar icon
    Yes
    Underinsurance protection
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    Optional ExtraUp To 30% Of Building Sum Insured
    New for old
    replacement
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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.

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