North Queensland has been known to take a battering from mother nature, and this can sometimes be reflected in the cost of home and contents insurance. Queensland as a whole has some pretty wild weather, but those in the north in particular are familiar with extreme elements – Cyclone Debbie caused a $1.5 billion loss in 2017.
However, many people choose to live in this beautiful part of the world, and rightly so. There is plenty of reason to live up north, such as the Great Barrier Reef and the year-round warm weather. But if you want your home to be protected, you may face more intricate insurance risks.
Canstar’s database has just under 80 different policies available for North Queensland residents looking for home and contents insurance, so if you’re looking for a new policy or feel like upgrading your current one, check out some of the options below.
Home and contents insurance policies – North QLD
The table below displays a snapshot of home and contents products with direct links to the providers’ websites, sorted by Star Rating (highest to lowest) and then alphabetical order. These results are based on a policyholder under 50-years old in North Queensland (above Rockhampton) for building and contents worth less than $550,000.
Home insurance policies – North QLD
The table below displays a snapshot of building insurance products with links to the providers’ websites, sorted by Star Rating (highest to lowest) and then alphabetical. These results are based on a policyholder under 50 years old in North Queensland (above Rockhampton).
Contents insurance policies – North QLD
The table below displays a snapshot of contents insurance products with links to the providers’ websites, sorted by Star Rating (highest to lowest) and then alphabetical. These results are based on a policyholder under 50 years old in North Queensland (above Rockhampton) for contents worth under $75,000.
Why get home and contents insurance in North Queensland?
On top of the usual risks that come with owning a home and contents, North Queenslanders also face a unique risk – cyclones. According to the Bureau of Meteorology, an average 4.7 tropical cyclones hit the area every year. These cyclones can cause widespread destruction at their worst, and can also lead to run-on effects like flooding. 2017’s Tropical Cyclone Debbie saw 30,000 claims made across Queensland – the vast majority of which occurred in northern regions.
When a major disaster hits, insurers may pay out large sums to a large number of customers which, in turn, causes premiums to rise. This is why residents in North Queensland can end up paying sometimes thousands more on average in annual premiums.
While insurance premiums can be a large expense, it could be much lower than what you’d be faced with if you didn’t have home and contents insurance and experienced damage or loss, including from a storm. Of course, there are other reasons to have insurance on your home too – a policy could protect you financially from theft, vandalism, fires, storms, explosions and accidental damage.
With home and contents insurance, you can generally be insured for three different amounts:
- The sum insured: policies will typically pay claims for up to a specified amount
- Safety net: some policies pay an additional percentage above the sum insured amount in specific circumstances
- Total replacement: some policies pay the total cost to repair or replace your property or contents
You can never really be sure of what will happen to your home in the future, even if you live in a historically safe area. Home insurance can give you some peace of mind, and you could thank yourself later if your home suffers damage.
How much does home and contents insurance cost in North Queensland?
As you can see in the table below, our research shows home and contents insurance in North Queensland can be more expensive compared to other parts of Australia. For example, our research suggests the maximum average premium you would pay in South Queensland is around $2,675.00, while the minimum is $751.66. Bear in mind however your premiums will vary based on your age, location, home security and medium suburb price.
|Table 1: North Queensland average annual premiums|
|Insurance Type||Minimum Average Premium ($)||Maximum Average Premium ($)|
|Home & Contents||$1,827.86||$5,270.13|
Source: Canstar.com.au. Average annual premiums are based on products included in Canstar’s Home and Contents Insurance Star Ratings and Awards, 2017. Premiums are based on home insurance of $450,000 and contents insurance of $125,000, with a $500 excess.
On top of these premiums, Queensland residents pay an extra 9% in stamp duty. This article provides a more comprehensive breakdown of the average premiums across each state in Australia. Given the expensive nature of policies in North Queensland, it is a good idea to compare policies to find one that gives you good value for money.
Common exclusions to watch out for…
With any home and contents insurance policy, there are certain things you may not be covered for, known as exclusions. Some of the most common exclusions in Australia are:
- Leaving your home empty: check with your insurer if there’s a maximum period you can be away for before your cover is void.
- Having people stay in your house: in most cases, only the people on the insurance certificate are covered, so people housesitting, for example, may not be covered during an event.
- Not properly securing your home: claims may be rejected if you don’t take proper precautions to lock your home up.
- Existing damage: new policies may not cover damage that already exists.
- Stock for your home business: if you work from home, your business capital may not be covered under a standard home insurance policy. You may need additional business insurance.
- Animal and pet damage: standard policies are unlikely to cover you for damage caused by wild animals like turkeys or feral dogs, while you should check with your insurer if you’ll be covered for damage caused by your pets.
- Renovations: most insurers won’t cover damage connected to renovations you’ve undertaken.
Ensure you check the product disclosure statement (PDS) of your chosen policy before taking it out, so you can be aware of what you are and aren’t covered for. And as always, make sure you check out as many of the policies available in North Queensland as you can, using Canstar’s website: