More and more of us are working from home. Before we heard about Coronavirus, about 1.7 million of us worked from home, based on Business Comparison data. That’s about 5% of the workforce though 8.7 million said that they have worked from home at some point.Since the first Covid lockdown in April 2020, over 46% of people in employment worked from home and 86% of those was due to the virus based on Office of National Statistics data. Many of us moved from office spaces to kitchens, lounges, dining tables and bedrooms. The landscape of where we work has probably changed forever. So it’s good to know if you work from home: does your home insurance cover you, and what cover do you actually need.
How does working from home affect my home insurance?At MORE THAN we cover up to £7,500 for office equipment such as laptops, computers, monitors, desks, and chairs. We cover you if your work includes paperwork and admin tasks. If you have colleagues or customers coming to your home for meetings you may want to consider public liability or office insurance as your MORE THAN home policy won't cover you.
There isn't any cover for theft from the home if you have customers coming to your home relating to your business.
To help you understand the cover, here are some examples:
- Working as a therapist at home. The equipment you use to carry out paperwork, such as the ordering of stock and invoicing will be covered on our home policy. But the products you use or having clients come to your home is NOT and you may want to consider business insurance.
- A decorator. The equipment you use to send quotes or do a tax return would be covered on our home policy, but the van you drive, the stock (paints, brushes), and working in different places would not be covered by your home insurance.
- A Marketing manager. Working on a laptop or computer with meetings being carried out by video conference calls, your home insurance will cover you.
It’s good to check you have the right level of cover either by reading your home policy documents or calling your provider.
Do I have to tell my insurer I am working from home?
You do not need to tell us if you are doing clerical work from home, such as using a laptop or phone or carrying out paperwork.
Some insurers do need you to tell them so it's best to check with them.
Do I need extra home insurance cover to work from home?
You don’t need to add work equipment, such as a phone or laptop, to your home policy if they are owned by your employer.
Clerical business equipment that is owned by you will be covered under home contents insurance, such as laptops, printers, desks, etc. But we don’t cover other types of business equipment. So, we recommend checking your policy schedule and policy wording for more information.
More and more of us are working from home and will continue to do so. That has risen the number of people creating office spaces in sheds, summer houses and other outbuildings. These are called shoffices.
At MORE THAN we cover the structure of these buildings and the contents inside them too. If you are working from home in your garden shed or outbuilding, there is a limit of £3,000 of contents cover against theft.
If you’re with another provider it is probably best to check your level of cover with them.
If you have extended your home or created a new outdoor space for an office. Check the level of your buildings and contents cover to ensure you have enough if the worst should happen. At MORE THAN we offer up to £1 million for buildings and up to £100,000 contents cover in the home as standard.
You may be able to claim tax relief back for additional household costs, such as heating or telephone calls if you have to work at home regularly, like during Covid. The GOV.UK website has a useful page about how to make a tax relief claim.
Now we are in our homes more you may want to consider cover for mishaps in the home, for example, if you knock over a coffee cup on your laptop. This is called accidental damage cover. You may notice you’re switching on the heating or using more hot water so putting more strain on your boiler. You might want to consider getting your boiler service annually or getting boiler cover to ensure it stays in tip-top shape or help is on hand if you need it.
Can I run my business from my home?Our home insurance will cover you if you are running a business from your home, but only for clerical work for your business, such as paperwork.
We do not cover any business stock, materials, tools, equipment, or business money. Our home cover will NOT cover you for any liability related to your business. And, does not cover regular visitors to the home.
If you need cover for your business equipment or liability cover you may wish to consider taking out business insurance and liability cover for your business.
What insurance do I need if my business is based from home?
Home insurance will not cover your business. You need to consider business insurance.
If you work at home you may want to consider these 3 options to cover you for certain events.
- Public liability
Provides cover for your business against legal liability you may incur from third parties or members of the public if they are injured or their property is damaged as a result of your business activities.
- Professional indemnity
Is a type of cover to protect your business if you provide designs, specifications, advice or instructions as part of your job. If any of your recommendations or advice cause financial loss for a client and you’re found to be at fault, this is the cover that will keep you safe.
- Employer's liability
Provides cover for your business against the cost of compensation claims, should an employee be injured or become ill as a result of working for your business.
Does home insurance cost more if I run a business from home?
There is no additional charge for running a business from your home if you are carrying out paperwork or clerical work.
If you have business stock and equipment or have visitors connected to your business visiting your home then you may want to consider additional insurance cover.
Do I need business insurance if I work from home?If you are carrying out paperwork and administration tasks you do not need business insurance as your MORE THAN home policy will cover you. Please check with your provider if you have the right cover.
However, if you have business stock or equipment you may want to consider business insurance. Also, if you do only carry out admin tasks at home but have visitors to your home too you may want to consider public liability insurance.
Get adequate cover
Make sure your home insurance is up to date and you have the right cover for your needs. If you have created any home office spaces, such as a converted summer house, make sure these are covered. This includes all your office equipment.
Remember for office equipment you are covered under your home insurance for clerical admin work.
If you have a business, assess your business needs too because you may need additional cover if the worst should happen.