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Should homeowners ensure contents insurance covers garden accessories?

It may be important for homeowners to examine the detail of their contents insurance after a report from Lloyds TSB Insurance shed light on the type of luxury items some people now keep in their gardens.

OnePoll was commissioned by Lloyds TSB Insurance to carry out a survey of 2,000 UK homeowners, demonstrating how a number of respondents have swapped plants for garden furniture in recent years.

Indeed, figures from the Garden Centre Association Barometer of Trade recorded a 15% decline in sales of outdoor plants between January and June 2012, the Lloyds TSB Insurance report showed.

According to the results of the survey, sampled homeowners spent an average of £894 on outdoor furniture and outdoor decorations for their gardens over the past 12 months. Lloyds TSB Insurance claimed 85% of homeowners have some form of outdoor space around their property, estimating that a potential £14 billion was spent on gardens in the last year. 

The study said the typical UK garden is now worth £1,928 as 1 in 10 people questioned admitted to spending money on their gardens as they did not have enough cash to move home. A third of respondents also revealed they splashed out on their gardens because they spent a lot of time outdoors. 

Highlighting a number of accessories respondents' were adding to their gardens, the Lloyds TSB Insurance report found 10% of people questioned put a hot tub in their garden, while 22% invested in a trampoline. In fact, 8% veered towards summer houses, while 4% of sampled homeowners opted to fix up their garden instead of putting their property on the market.

Presenter of ITV's Love Your Garden, Frances Tophill, commented on the study's findings. She said: "We don't often get a chance to peek over the garden fence of the nation, but as homeowners become too time-poor for gardening, features like decking, summer houses and leisure items have moved into prime position in our back gardens."

Ms Tophill added: "Whilst it is positive that we are valuing our outdoor spaces more, I hope the traditional image of the flower-filled Great British garden is not beginning to wilt."

The Lloyds TSB Insurance study found that 44% of respondents either had no insurance in place to cover the value of their garden accessories, or did not know if their current policy was sufficient to financially safeguard these possessions.

Those in search of protection might also like to get in contact with us to find an affordable policy that meets your needs. This could help with savings that might be used for home improvements, for example.

Senior Claims Manager at Lloyds TSB Insurance Tim Downes said: "As our gardens grow increasingly expensive, homeowners are realising that they no longer own just a few pounds worth of petunias, but hundreds of pounds worth of leisure items. Garden-proud homeowners should check their insurance policies to ensure their beloved outdoor luxuries are property protected."

The report also singled out a number of ways sampled homeowners were making the most of their gardens. Some 57% of people questioned revealed they used the garden as a place to relax, while 9% said they spent most of their family time in the green space.


www.comparethemarket.com, www.lloyds.com


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