Skip to main content Skip to main navigation Skip to accessibility page Skip to search input


Do I really need Home Insurance?

Imagine if a flood, fire or storm wreaked havoc on your home and also caused damage to your personal property – what would you do? A home insurance policy allows you to receive compensation for a specific loss or damage in return for the payment of a premium, so you can have the means to get back on your feet. If you own a house, apartment or are renting, there are certain types of insurance that will apply to you.  Here are the main types of insurance and key questions to consider. 


Building Insurance: What does building insurance cover? 

Building insurance covers both the main structure as well as permanent fixtures such as kitchen cabinets, plumbing and built-in wardrobes. Depending on the policy, it may also cover any legal liability caused if someone is injured while visiting your property. If you require a mortgage on your home, lenders may also require Building Insurance before you settle your home loan.

Many homeowners underinsure their property so it’s worth knowing that Building Insurance is calculated on the rebuild value and not the market value of a property. 

In general, damage or losses caused by wear and tear or failing to maintain your property are not covered under Building Insurance.

Contents Insurance: Do I need home insurance if I own an apartment?

Most apartments in Australia are strata titled and building insurance may already be covered in the body corporate levies or in the overall residential strata insurance where the cost is shared between all owners. This type of cover is compulsory in each state and territory in Australia.

It can also be a good idea to have Contents Insurance cover for your personal belongings. Your contents could be more valuable than you think and if you had to replace them completely it could be a costly exercise. 

Contents Insurance: What does contents insurance cover? 

Contents Insurance covers your household items and personal belongings if they are damaged, lost or stolen in an unforeseen event. This can include your furniture, clothes, computer, fridge, washing machine, television, tools, art and jewellery.  

Some policies will also provide cover for your contents when you take them outside of your home (usually for an additional premium).

Is there a benefit to Home and Contents Insurance?

Taking out a Home and Contents Insurance policy will provide cover for both your building and possessions inside your home. While they are two separate policies, having them under one agreement means you have less hassle and only have one premium to pay. Depending on the insurer, you could be entitled to a combined policy discount. 

What Insurance is available for renters? 

While a landlord is responsible for your building, if an unexpected event were to cause loss or damage to your personal belongings, such as your engagement ring, watch, surfboard, TV, laptop or handbag, you could be out of pocket. 

Renters Insurance often has lower cover limits than a Contents Insurance policy and premiums can be more affordable. 

Do I need Landlord Insurance if I am a property investor? 

Landlord Insurance can provide cover for just the building, its contents or both, depending on what you choose. While many lenders may require building insurance, contents insurance can cover the fixtures and fittings including the curtains, kitchen cupboards, appliances, plumbing and carpets. Depending on the policy, it can also cover you for liability, loss of rent if the home can’t be lived in or your tenants default.

How much should I insure my house for?

One of the biggest risks when considering home insurance is not taking out enough cover. In the event that your home and/or contents are completely destroyed, you may not have enough money to rebuild the home entirely or replace all of your possessions.

Read more

Do I need Landlord Insurance?

Landlord Insurance can offer peace of mind to investment property owners if something unexpected were to happen. Landlord Insurance provides cover for specific events such as a flood, fire, storm and theft.

Read more


The Detail

The information contained in this article is general information only and is not specific to any product.  

It does not take into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs and so you should consider its appropriateness, having regard to your personal objectives, financial situation and needs to these factors before acting on it.

Terms, conditions and exclusions apply to any insurance product. Please read the disclosure documents for your selected product or service, including the Terms and Conditions or Product Disclosure Statement, before deciding.

Cover is subject to your application for insurance being accepted.

Product Disclosure Statements (PDS)

Home and Contents Insurance Product Disclosure Statement and Supplementary Product Disclosure Statement (PDF 1MB)  (applicable to policies issued or renewed on or after 1 July 2019)

Home and Contents Insurance Product Disclosure Statement and Supplementary Product Disclosure Statement (PDF 1MB) (applicable to policies initially issued in the period between 30 June 2018 and 30 June 2019; or renewed in the period between 30 July 2018 and 30 June 2019)

Product Disclosure Statements (PDS)

Landlord Insurance Product Disclosure Statement and Supplementary Product Disclosure Statement (PDF 2MB) (applicable to policies issued or renewed on or after 1 July 2019)

Landlord Insurance Product Disclosure Statement (PDF 2MB) (applicable to policies initially issued in the period between 30 June 2018 and 30 June 2019; or renewed in the period between 30 July 2018 and 30 June 2019)

This information does not take your personal objectives, circumstances or needs into account. Read the relevant PDS(s) to see if this insurance is right for you.

View the Retail and Business Banking Financial Services Guide, Credit Guide and Privacy Statement. (PDF 87KB)

Home and Contents Insurance is issued by Westpac General Insurance Limited ABN 99 003 719 319 (except workers compensation cover where applicable).  Bank of Melbourne  – a Division of Westpac Banking Corporation ABN 33 007 457 141 (the Bank) distributes the insurance, but does not guarantee the insurance.