Mozo Home and Contents Insurance Jargon Buster

There's no doubt about it, home and contents insurance policy writers love their mumbo jumbo. If you're struggling to get your head around some of the home insurance lingo (and really who wouldn't) our jargon buster is here to help.

Accidental Damage (vs. Defined Events) In a defined events policy the insurer will list the specific events they will provide cover for usually including Fire, Storm, Burglary, Impact, Glass Breakage, Earthquake, Malicious Damage, and Lightning. Accidental Damage is a higher level of cover and typically more expensive as it takes into account a much wider range of incidents (like spilling red wine on the carpet or a plasma TV falling off the wall.)

Building Replacement Value is the amount it would cost you to completely rebuild your house at current prices.

Duty of Disclosure you have a duty to tell your insurer everything you know that is relevant to the insurers decision to insure you. The information you supply will affect the amount of your premium, and special conditions and whether your insurer will insure you. Failing to tell your insurer something relevant could result in a claim being reduced or refused.

Excess is the amount you have to pay yourself towards each incident if you make a claim. Usually your insurer will deduct the excess from the amount of cover they would pay you under your policy and then pay you the remainder.

Flood Cover Defined as damage caused to home and contents caused by rain which results in pooling, overflowing or spreading of rainwater. This is quite separate from damage caused by the sea or faulty plumbing. It's really worth checking the details of this with your insurer.

Fusion is the burning out of an electric motor or its wiring caused by the electric current in it. Items that may be subject to a fusion claim include washing machines, refrigerators, clothes dryers, freezers and pool motors.

New for Old If your home or contents are damaged or stolen, a new for old policy means your insurer will replace them with new items or repair them with new materials available at the time of replacement from Australian suppliers.

Optional Cover is extra cover that goes above and beyond a standard policy. You can ask your insurer to add optional covers to your policy for example, to cover jewellery or an heirloom spoon-collection.

Premium a premium is basically the amount you pay your insurer for insurance.

Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) A PDS is the name of the document that contains all the important terms and conditions relating to your insurance. It tells you what cover is provided and lists costs, fees and charges. It's vital that you read this document cover to cover before you sign up with an insurer.

Sum Insured is the largest amount you could claim from your insurer under the rules of your policy.