The average UK garage contains valuables worth over £2,000
The average garage is a treasure trove worth over £2,000, according to new research by Money Supermarket.
This estimate means UK garages and sheds are worth a total of £35bn collectively, with an eclectic mix of family heirlooms, musical instruments, DIY kits, bikes and over £1bn of alcohol contributing to the total.
- Londoners invest the most in their outside space – £4,188 per garden, compared to the national average £1,223. They are also most likely to own a hot tub, and confess to stashing the highest value of booze in their garage - £495 per household
- Sports equipment adds up for those in the West Midlands, who stash rackets and bats worth £360 in their garages
- Professionals in the East of England have the highest value in home office equipment in their garages – a massive £823 per household
- Those in the North East have the most expensive family heirlooms locked away, worth over £1,700 on average
With garages clearly holding a significant amount of valuables, Money Supermarket is advising homeowners to ensure they have sufficient insurance. Kevin Pratt provides his top tips:
“Many policyholders think items kept in their garage or shed are included in their main home insurance contents policy. However, if they have no inside access through to the main house, then they’ll be classified as ‘outbuildings’ and will have a separate limit on the value of contents insured under most home contents policies.
“Some policies will offer unlimited garden and out-house cover, but these are few and far between, so it’s worth checking the level of cover your policy includes."
“If an accident happens in your garden where blame can be attributed to yourself, you’ll need liability cover in the unfortunate case that you’re sued. It’s worth checking what your policy documents have to say on this point."
Lock up your garden treasures
“Homeowners should ensure their gardens and outbuildings are as secure as possible, by installing sturdy locks on buildings, and making it difficult for thieves to get in and out of your garden, by mending broken fences, locking gates and even planting thick-growing, prickly bushes around the perimeter."
Check your policy wording
“With such treasures in our gardens and garages, it is important for homeowners to check their home contents insurance policy wording to ensure there’s enough cover in place. If you’re unsure, speak to your provider, and if necessary, increase your level of cover to avoid the risk of underinsurance.
“Also check the terms of cover. For example, a bike might only be insured while it’s in your garden if it’s secured to an immovable object. In other words, a claim for a bike that’s stolen while left propped against a wall might be turned down.
“If you’ve got exceptionally expensive items in your garden, it could be worth checking the single item limit on your currency policy – most insurers require anything over the value of £1,500 to be listed separately.”
Is your garage sufficiently insured? Join the debate by tweeting us @What_House