My Home Office Was Damaged By a Leak in the Attic Whilst We Were on Holiday. Will My Home Insurance Cover Us?
Caeva O'Callaghan | August 4th, 2020
Accidents do happen, even while you’re on a well-earned holiday. If you’ve come back to discover your roof has leaked, your insurance will cover it.
Yes – the damage caused by the leak will be covered.
If the leak has caused damage to your walls and floors have then this will be covered by your buildings policy. Electronics and other items will either fall under your home contents policy, or your employer’s insurance.
Coming home from holiday to find out there’s been a big storm and your roof is leaking is a nightmare. Luckily, home insurance exists for just this situation.
In this article, we’ll cover questions like:
- My home office has flooded, is this covered by my home insurance?
- What does my employer’s insurance cover?
- I work from home, do I have enough insurance?
If the damage is severe enough for a claim, there should be no need to worry. Your insurance – and your employer’s, if applicable – will cover everything.
Home office risks
Where’s the best place to put a home office? You may have the luxury of an external garden room with its own power and wifi, where you can relax as you work. Or, you might have to carve out time in the afternoon to work at the kitchen table while your toddler sleeps. Or, you might have a room in the house.
No matter where your home office is, it comes with risks like every other area of your home. Especially if your office space is dual-purpose – in the kitchen, for example, where fires readily occur. Or, if your office is in the garage or the garden, where you may not notice a break-in or leak for a couple of days.
The attic is a great place to put your home office. It’s a larger, warmer space than you might otherwise have. However, the attic also comes with risks.
The biggest risk to an attic space is storm damage and the resulting roof leaks. One night, your roof may tear off in a storm, but nothing that dramatic has to happen. One small leak, if it goes unnoticed over time, can cause thousands of euros’ worth of necessary repairs if left unchecked. Over your holiday, for example.
Roof leaks and home insurance
Your buildings insurance policy will cover damage to the structure of your home. If a roof tile comes loose or a hole develops in your roof, your insurance will cover the cost of repairs. This kind of work can be very costly, so it’s worth making a claim.
Just like the kitchen table, your office space might be dual-purpose, such as if you also use it for storage or a guest bedroom. This means you’re likely to have more personal belongings up there than your desk and chair. If damage occurs to your personal items, your contents insurance will cover those as long as you’ve declared them on your policy.
If you work for yourself as a limited company or as a sole trader, your business equipment will count under your belongings. This is unless, of course, you have taken out separate business insurance. If not, your insurance provider will treat all damaged items as your personal property. You’ll be fully compensated as long as their true value is on your policy, and you won’t have to involve your business affairs.
Working from home and for others
If you are working from home for someone else, your employer’s office insurance policy will cover damage to equipment. This includes laptops, printers and anything else they have supplied. Your employer should have all the necessary insurance in place before loaning these items to you.
Contrary to what some might believe, insurance companies have no problem with people working from home. It presents little to no additional risk than what you might be doing otherwise while in your home. Unless you’re a blacksmith, fire juggler or lion tamer, it’s unlikely what you do in the privacy of your home office will be risky.
This changes, however, when other people come under your roof. If customers, clients or other employees regularly visit you for business purposes, you need to tell your insurance provider.
In that scenario you aren’t just “working from home” – you’re “running a business from home”, which is different. In that case, we suggest that you take out a policy that will cover your business and all of its liabilities separately.
If you need to clarify what is covered under home insurance talk to us in QuoteMe.ie
If you are unsure of what exactly is covered regarding your house insurance, call and talk to our home insurance experts today. We can guide you through choosing a policy that best suits your needs. We are available for calls between 8.30am and 5.30pm each weekday on 0818 224433 or 042 9359051.