Most people have probably never heard of Goods in Transit Insurance. And this despite people moving all the time. It all seems simple enough. Get a removals company with good credentials for a decent price, and you’re away, right?

Well… not necessarily. You wouldn’t load your most cherished possessions into the back of any old van, would you?

One of the worst things that can happen, upon arriving at your new place, is to uncover loss or damage to your things. But the worst thing is discovering they weren’t insured properly.

Home insurance and moving house

If you own the property you’re in right now, the chances are you have a home insurance policy. And, once you move, you will also have a shiny new policy for your new place too.

Home insurance protects not just the building you live in but all the things you’ve got in it too. Your furniture, your laptop, your cuckoo clock collection – if your home contents are burgled or damaged in a fire or a flood, then you can claim them back.

Some home/contents insurance policies cover items during removals as a standard feature. Sometimes this can be bought as an extra. In many cases though, your home/contents insurance policy will not cover you. And there may be exclusions that give you cause for concern.

All of this means that your house move represents a significant chink in your coverage. And this is where Goods in Transit Insurance comes in.

What is Goods In Transit Insurance?

Goods In Transit insurance exists to protect your things as they make their journey from your old home to your new.

And the good news is that this is rarely something you have to hunt for yourself. Any reputable moving firm should cover your goods in transit either as a built-in component of their service or as a low-cost add-on.

However, it’s not a legal requirement for removal companies to have Goods In Transit insurance, and plenty don’t. And, if you’re moving your things in the back of a mate’s van, you won’t be covered either.

This is why it’s essential to check that the firm you’re moving with is adequately insured. This information should be displayed on the removal company website.

buzzmove vets all its partners to ensure they have Goods In Transit Insurance.  Get up to 6 free quotes from trusted home removal companies here.

Removal truck with a blank back side.

Keep your Things Safe When You Move: Top Tips

Knowing that you have cover in place for your move takes a burden off your shoulders at what is, generally speaking, a fairly burdensome time. But don’t trip up at the finish line.

Here are a few tips for ensuring that your cover does what it’s meant to, so that you can have maximum peace of mind and avoid any surprises down the road.

Don’t pack your belongings yourself

Moving house can be expensive (check out our recent post on removals costs), so it’s natural to look for ways to bring the overall cost down.

However, cutting corners can often lead to a false economy. For example, many people opt to pack their goods themselves, saving on the cost of their removal company doing this for them.

But few people know that, if you pack your items yourself, you likely won’t be covered by your removal company’s Goods in Transit insurance.

Think about it: is that small saving worth compromising your main safety net in the event that something gets damaged?

This is why it’s always best to let your removal company do the packing for you. Or, if you still want to pack yourself, check first with your mover that this won’t invalidate your cover.

If your insurer does insure valuables as part of your home policy, this is often with the understanding that they will be packed by a professional firm. So you can potentially invalidate not just your mover’s cover but also your home insurer’s as well.

Also, there’s more than just an insurance angle at play here …

A good removal company trains its staff to pack belongings safely and securely, minimising the risk of damage to fragile or expensive items. By comparison, most of us don’t really know what we’re doing. Or we leave our packing a little too late and just sling stuff in boxes any old how. Another reason to play safe not sorry and leave it to the professionals!

Check whether you need additional cover

Using a mover with Goods In Transit insurance is a basic requirement of any move. But there are some cases where you might want to consider more protection still. This is because:

However much Goods in Transit insurance your removal company has, it only offers limited liability for any losses and damages. Typically, this means a cap on cover for each item, regardless of its value.

In plain English: if an expensive item gets broken, you may well not be able to claim it all back.

For this reason, don’t rely on your mover’s Goods In Transit insurance in the case of valuable items. And, even if your home insurer covers goods in transit, this commonly excludes valuables like jewelry, watches and written documents.

If you want to ensure your expensive items are 100% out of harm’s way during the move, it’s advisable not to simply rely on any blanket cover, be it provided by your mover or by your home insurer.

We recommend speaking to your home insurer and checking the terms and conditions of the Goods In Transit insurance offered by your mover. There may be additional coverage that you can purchase – but, as ever, this starts with understanding where your gaps are.

Insurance for Goods in Storage

It’s difficult to orchestrate your house move so that you move into your new home on the same day as you vacate your own.

If there’s a gap between moving out and moving in, then your possessions will usually have to spend some time in storage. And you need to protect your goods during this period.

In all likelihood, your storage company will insist you have insurance in place for whatever you’re storing at their facility. You can choose between buying whatever insurance they offer or arrange cover separately (providing them with documentary proof of that cover).

Check the terms and conditions of their offer to understand exactly what’s covered. You should also speak to your existing home insurer (if applicable). They may cover goods in storage but bear in mind that there will likely be exclusions and that there may be a limit to how long you can be covered for.

What about Shipping Things Internationally?

If you’re moving abroad, your goods shipped by sea should be covered by a marine insurance policy. These policies will generally include transit over land at both ends of the journey. However, we recommend always checking the Terms and Conditions to ensure your things are adequately protected.

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