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Make sure you have a 'new for old' house insurance clause

JI was pleasantly surprised to find my house insurance renewal was the same as last year. Broker www.insuremyhouse.ie says competition has brought downward pressure on premiums, which is good for the consumer.

However it also warned that insurers are being a bit sneaky when it comes to applying terms and conditions when you make a claim.

Instead of paying for the full replacement value of an item stolen/damaged, some are paying a heavily discounted value, offering a voucher instead or paying up to 30pc less if you insist on cash. They are entitled only to pay for the actual loss (what price a five-year-old sofa?) but used not to enforce this as it was too messy.

Not so any more.

Check your policy to see if you have a "new for old" clause which means you get the full value for a brand new replacement item.