A couple of things most policyholders don`t know.
- If your insurance company deem you underinsured by say 50% then you only get half the settlement. What this means is if you have a house of 1500 sq foot and you insure the building for 100k and the Loss Adjuster for Insurers find when they price the rebuild with the Chartered Surveyors of Ireland using your area code and they say it will cost €200k then you are 50% underinsured in their view and they will only offer you 50% of any claim made on the policy (a common one would be escape of water). Contents can also be a factor in underinsurance. Also remember if you extended the house at any stage this will have added to the value of the property.
- Insurers like to ask in their proposal document about your roof being of standard construction. If you say it is but they later discover that because of extensions or that you have a large flat roof on say a garage and these are felted then you breach the policy if it exceeds 15 to 20% of the total roof area. Insurers differ on the percentage but they can and will refuse your claim in these circumstances and may even cancel your policy back to inception refunding you your premium. This will make it difficult and expensive to get insured elsewhere.
- Insurers generally keep 20 to 30% of your claim until the work is done and they get receipts and photographs which is highly debatable in my view. If you have for instance a water leak and have to replace your floors and paint and say the agreed settlement is €10k then they like to keep say 3k till the work is complete. Nobody gives a reason how you are supposed to get the work complete when you only have 7k? They also like to set a timeline of say 3 months from settlement to the time the works are complete saying if it's not done by then that they will retain the balance.
I advise you get your policy via an Insurance Broker and use a loss Assessor to represent you if you have a claim.