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Settlement guide: How to protect your home and possessions against damage or theft

Finding the right insurance for you is a valuable way of protecting your household goods. Source: Getty Images

Are you looking for a contents insurance? Here are some tips to get you started.

Make an inventory

Before you take out any policy create a checklist, it's useful! You can make an inventory of what you own and evaluate the cost of replacing each item.

You should also take photos of everything and don’t forget to keep the receipts of things you buy.

You can use a content calculator when you create your household inventory checklist.

Taking notes
Make a list of everything of value that you own and want the insurer to cover.

Shop around for the right policy

There are lots of ways to get contents insurance. There are independent and commercial comparison sites.

But the best thing to do, whichever way you go, is to get three quotes from three different insurers.

If you have expensive items not covered by your policy you can always add an extension if necessary.

Give accurate information

You should always provide accurate information to your insurer. Make sure you don't underestimate the value of what you own!

And again, keep receipts, records and photos and don’t forget to update your inventory every year and if necessary, your policy.

Shop around for a policy that best suits your needs and protects all that is important to you.

Read the fine print

Every insurance policy is different, so you need to read the fine print.

Some covers accidental damage while some do not. Some will cover a piece of jewellery up to five hundred dollars, but you might have an expensive ring that needs additional cover. Or for example with some insurers you have to activate flood cover.

Shop around for better policies every year as insurers generally keep the best offers for new customers.

Useful links

Understand Insurance, an initiative of the Insurance Council of Australia 

- Contents calculator and household inventory checklist 

Find an insurer (compares insurers)

- Information about home and contents insurance from Australian consumer advocay group Choice

Flooded house
Always read the fine print, some insurers may charge additional costs for events like flooding.