A Short History of Home Insurance

A Short History of Home Insurance – According to the Association of British Insurers almost three-quarters of British households possess home contents insurance and slightly more than six in ten have buildings insurance. These are impressive figures to some, yet in this day and age when most people own valuable material goods and houses that would be expensive to replace, it may appear that the country as a whole is underinsured.
Insurance, in its various forms has existed for thousands of years, but home insurance in the UK is a relatively modern phenomenon for the majority of homeowners. Available only to the wealthy prior to the start of 20th century, the uptake in home contents insurance policies has more or less matched the growth in accumulated wealth of the UK population.
Prior to 1900 the majority of the British population did not own their own home and the houses in which they lived boasted very few possessions. Home ownership grew moderately during the next 60 years, but it wasn’t until the last 40 years of the 20th century that it really boomed. In 1950 home ownership in the UK stood at 29%, by the mid-1990s that had risen to 70%. In addition, the personal wealth of Britons, even excluding property, rose rapidly.
In conjunction with the increase in owner-occupation came an increase in the amount of accumulated consumer goods. From the 1950s onwards people started to fill their houses with white goods, electrical items and other furnishings and it was only natural that they would wish to insure those goods against potential disasters such as fire, flood and theft. However, in those early days getting home insurance quotes was quite laborious and usually involved engaging an insurance broker to assimilate the best insurance policy available for their customer.
During the next 50 years little changed in the way that people arranged their insurances until the advent of the internet in the 1990s. The widespread roll-out of broadband over the past decade has revolutionised the home insurance market. Now it is simple to find the best home insurance quotes almost instantly on the web by using comparison websites. The potential customer simply enters their personal and home details once and is then presented with pages of options, usually arranged in ascending premium price order.
With three-quarters of UK households already policy holders the contents insurance market is now massive and highly competitive, sin only 40 years it has expanded almost exponentially, yet it could still expand further.