Churchill Home Insurance Review
Thanks to a massive marketing spend, we’re all familiar with Churchill’s nodding dog and the phrase, “Ho, yes!”
Churchill was founded in 1989 as one of the first direct car insurance companies.
It’s since expanded to cover range of insurance products, including Churchill home insurance.
To see if you could save money on your house, compare home insurance quotes today.
Who’s behind the badge?
The company is part of the Direct Line group and its policies are underwritten by United Kingdom Insurance Limited.
Churchill’s home insurance offer
Churchill claims that 20% of its customers paid as little as £98 for basic house insurance in the six months up to April 2017.
If you're unsure how to save money on home insurance, Churchill could be worth considering.
Churchill buildings & contents
When choosing home insurance, most people will find it cost-effective to combine a buildings and contents policy, so long as they need cover for both.
There are a few stand outs in Churchill’s policies:
* If you make a claim under both buildings and contents you will only pay one policy’s excess.
* New for old cover includes damaged clothing.
* No admin fees for amending a policy.
* A 24-hour legal advice line.
* Cover for the garden includes up to £1,000 for landscaping and £1,000 for plants in total or £250 a plant.
It's important to understand exactly what your policy covers for and if there are any exclusions, to avoid any home insurance pitfalls.
If you're in any doubt what your policy covers, contact Churchill and ask for clarification.
Churchill buildings insurance
One thing to note in our Churchill home insurance review is that most people who need both buildings and content cover will find they get the best deal by combining the two with one insurer.
Churchill offers two levels of buildings cover, Home Insurance and Home Plus.
For Home Insurance, your building is covered for a rebuild cost of £1m, which is totally adequate for most people. Home Plus offers unlimited rebuild cover.
Alternative accommodation if your home becomes uninhabitable is £25,000 with the basic level and up to £50,000 with Home Plus.
Property owner’s liability cover (basically if someone sues you) is £2m with the basic level of cover and up to £5m with Home Plus.
Churchill contents insurance
If you’re a tenant, your landlord will usually take care of buildings insurance, but not contents.
Similarly, if you live in an owned flat, but pay a service charge, the building insurance is probably included in that charge; if that’s the case, you don’t need to worry about it and you can opt for contents-only cover.
Protecting your property is important. Here's why contents insurance matters - and how to get it right.
Again, Churchill offers the same two levels of cover, Home Insurance and Home Plus.
Home Insurance will be adequate for most people’s needs, offering to insure contents up to £50k (Home Plus doubles that figure).
The standard level of cover also covers individual items up to £2,000, and, again, you can double that cover by opting for the Home Plus cover.
Otherwise, cover is fairly standard.
Notable, though, is that both levels of cover offer as standard the contents of your garden, including plants and landscaping (with the limits mentioned above) and cover for the loss or theft of house keys.
Like all insurers, Churchill offers optional extras, which will, naturally, increase your premium.
Accidental Damage – The main risks to cover with home insurance are the disasters of fire, flood and a burglary, but if cover for accidental damage is also available.
It’s worth considering how much this is actually worth, though, as there will be an excess and if you claim your premium is highly likely to rise as a result.
Personal possessions – Standard cover only applies to your possessions in the home.
However, if you want to protect personal items such as watches, jewellery and cameras, you will need to upgrade your cover with this option, which all insurers offer.
Home Emergency cover – If you want peace of mind to know that if your central heating fails, for example, or your power supply stops working, this emergency cover option is available – Churchill’s covers up to £500 per call out, including parts and labour.
Family Legal Protection – This covers legal costs up to £100,000 should you or your family become embroiled in a legal case, such as problems with tradesmen working in your home, or a dispute with a holiday company.
Difference between buildings and contents insurance
If you’re in any doubt about the difference between what is covered by buildings insurance and what by contents, then it’s always advisable to check with an insurer.
But, as a rule of thumb, if you picture being able to tip your home upside down, whatever stays put comes under buildings, whatever falls is contents.
Don’t try and save cash by insuring either building or contents for less than their overall value or cost (the cost of rebuilding your home in the case of buildings insurance and NOT the value of your home on the property market).
If you under-insure, this may be taken into account if you make a claim.
If you have electronics stolen, for example, and it’s decided by the insurer that your entire contents are under-insured by, say, 20%, you may get 20% of knocked off what you’d otherwise be paid for the stolen items.
How Churchill scores
Which? carries out the most comprehensive assessment of customer satisfaction (an important part of any home insurance review). It also looks at policies and terms and makes its own assessment to arrive at a ranking.
Churchill’s scores are a mixed bag and overall it’s placed 15th out of 31 insurers in the Which? table.
It scores an impressive four out of five stars for customer service and the way it handles complaints as well as value for money.
It scored three out of five stars for clarity of charges.
Overall customers gave the company a score of 68%, placing it in 10th place out of 31.
Which? scores it at 69%, placing it in 15th place of its scores for insurers.
It scores 70% for the quality of its buildings cover, putting it in a lowly 22nd position out of 31 insurers.
For its contents cover, Churchill does better, with a score of 70%, placing it in 16th position out of 31 insurers.
Unsure whether to change home insurance? Read: Switching home insurance - why you should do it and what you need to know.
Churchill home insurance: customer service contact details
Which number you need to call depends on the nature of your inquiry.
Churchill's home insurance customer service is on 0345 603 3551, claims are on 0345 603 3590 and the 24/hour emergency line is 0345 603 3599.
If you're unhappy, make a complaint about Churchill on A Spokesman Said.
We're in your corner when an insurer lets you down and will do our best to help.
* Cover for burst pipes as standard with buildings’ insurance.
* No adjustment fees
We don’t like
* Cancellation fee of £36 after cooling off period.
* A whopping 22% APR on monthly payments – if you can’t pay outright, check if your credit card is cheaper, it may well be.
WHEN DID YOU LAST SWITCH YOUR CAR INSURANCE PROVIDER?
Last year 65% of customers didn't switch their car insurance to try and get a better deal.