M&S Home Insurance Review: Does this Cover Suit Your Needs?

M&S Home Insurance Review: Does this Cover Suit Your Needs?

Good for

  • Saving 20% when you buy online
  • Paying monthly
  • New-for-old replacement items, including clothes
  • Covering plants in the garden
  • Those away from home for long periods (up to 90 days)
  • Getting replacement locks if keys lost
  • Covering pairs and sets
  • Contributing to boiler replacement

Bad for

  • Those wanting a cheap premium

Editor's Rating

4.0/5.0

The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.

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In This Review

M&S Home Insurance Review: What You Need to Know

M&S Home Insurance can be a good option for those who value quality over price—Marks and Spencer plans are not for those looking for the cheapest home insurance deal. Our pricing analysis found that M&S Standard plans cost around 30% more than average, but policyholders can benefit from a host of perks not offered on some other home insurance plans.

For instance, Contents cover will replace items on a new-for-old basis (including clothes), plants in the garden and pairs/sets; you get up to 90 days away before your home is considered "unoccupied"; M&S will pay to have your locks replaced in the event of lost keys; and optional HomeServe cover will contribute £500 to boiler replacement in the event it fails and is too costly to repair.

Differences Between Standard and Premier Plans Besides higher limits, Premier plans offer a number of additional benefits when compared to Standard plans. For instance, Premier plans are protected on an "all risks" basis which means all loss and damage is covered unless it was explicitly excluded in the Policy Booklet. Standard plans are not "all Risks" so you are only protected against specific events listed in the Policy Booklet. Another difference between Standard and Premier plans is that storm damage to fences and gates is covered on Premier plans, but not on Standard plans.

When it comes to Accidental Damage, Premier plans automatically include full cover to provide protection against events from spilled wine on the carpet to a broken shower screen to putting a foot through the floor. Standard cover provides partial Accidental Damage cover to specific items (e.g., fixed glass and sanitary fittings in the home) and full Accidental Damage is available as an optional cover for an extra cost.

No Claims Discount No Claims Discount (NCD) protection is an option available on both plans for an added cost. You're eligible for NCD protection if you have 5 years no claims discount as calculated by M&S and you've been claim free for at least the last 3 years. With the NCD protection you can claim up to twice in five years without losing your no claims discount or affecting your premiums as a direct result of a claim.

Moving House? For those moving house within the British Isles through professional movers, M&S contents cover will protect against financial loss due to accidental damage or theft during the move, including whilst in temporary storage for us to 7 days. However, note that personal money, jewellery, watches, items of gold or platinum, stamps and coins are not covered during household removals, so you'd be advised to watch out for those yourself.

Personal Possessions Away From Home You can buy OPTIONAL Away From Home cover on both Standard (up to £25,000) and Premier plans (up to £50,000) to protect against loss of or damage to items like wallets and watches when they are temporarily away from your home.

No Heat? Those opting for M&S's HomeServe home emergency cover get up to £1,000 per call out, which is higher than the typical £500 limit. If a part needs to be ordered to re-establish heating in the home and the part will take over 72 hours to arrive from the engineer’s first visit, M&S will deliver two electrical heaters to the property (which are yours to keep). If the main heating system is declared "beyond economical repair," M&S will contribute £500 towards a new boiler or electric heater.

M&S Home Insurance Key Facts

  • Two plans to choose from: Premier and Standard
  • Premier: unlimited cover for buildings and contents; includes Accidental Damage
  • Standard: up to £1,000,000 for buildings and up to £100,000 for contents

M&S Home Insurance Price Comparison

We found that Marks and Spencer Standard home insurance plans run roughly 30% more expensive than the market average. To some extent, you get what you pay for—we found that M&S plans offers a host of perks such as higher inner limits (e.g., Personal Belongings protected to at least £25k if you opt for Away from Home cover), replacing locks if keys are lost (not just replacing the keys) and £500 towards boiler replacement (if you opt for HomeServe cover).

We gathered pricing data from the M&S website to give you a general idea of how M&S home insurance quotes compare to others in the market. For the purposes of this exercise, we quoted for a 30-year-old policyholder living in a mortgaged, 2-bedroom property in London, who had made no claims in the past few years. Insurance quotes can vary significantly from day to day and according to your individual details, so please just use the following data for educational purposes only; your quotes may reflect a large degree of variation. Additionally, insurance policies across different companies can be difficult to compare directly, as they can vary in terms of excess, cover amounts, etc.

chart comparing admiral home insurance premiums costs to market averages
Here's how M&S home insurance prices compare to market average premiums

M&S gives the option to choose a voluntary excess from £0 up to £1,000, which you pay on top of the compulsory £100 excess. A policy with a higher excess will have a lower premium, as you can see in the table above, because you're committing to pay more towards any valid claims. While a lower premium is certainly enticing, before signing up for a policy with a higher excess be sure you'd be able to pay the excess in the event of a valid claim.

M&S Home (Buildings and Contents) Insurance Add-On Costs

Here are estimated costs of add-on extras for a mortgaged, owner-occupied, 2-bed property in London when you buy an M&S buildings & contents home insurance policy. It can be useful to have an idea of the approximate cost of these optional features when you're deciding what cover to buy.

Estimated Costs of M&S Home Insurance ExtrasStandard PlansPremier Plans
Accidental Damage - Contents£27already included
Accidental Damage - Buildings£52already included
Accidental Damage - Buildings & Contents£80already included
Legal£27.15£27.15
Home Emergency Cover£56.00£56.00
Personal Belongings Away From Home (£2k)£23£28
Personal Belongings Away From Home (£5k)£38£38
Personal Belongings Away From Home (£10k)£71£71
chart showing approximate cost of home insurance add ons for Marks and spencer home insurance
How much will you pay for home insurance extras?

M&S Home Cover: Features

M&S home insurance can be extended through the addition of cover for: Away From Home/Personal Possessions, Accidental Damage (already included in Premier plans), Home Emergency, Pedal Cycle (i.e., Away From Home cover—bikes are already covered at home through Contents cover), and Family Legal. Limits for each section can be found below in the Policies section. For more complete details like full exclusions, please see the policy documents.

M&S Home Insurance FeaturesNotes
Contents Away From Home
  • Details
    • OPTIONAL cover for loss or damage to personal belongings like money, mobile phones, watches, jewellery, laptops, wallets and purses when you're away from home
  • Notable Exclusions
    • Theft from vehicle unless the items are hidden from view, all windows are closed and all doors and the boot are locked
    • bicycles
Pedal Cycle
  • Details
    • OPTIONAL worldwide away-from-home cover for loss, theft or damage
    • (Bicycles are covered automatically under Contents insurance while at home)
    • When selecting this option online, tell Marks and Spencer the value of your most valuable bike and all bikes in your family will be covered
  • Notable Exclusions
    • Unattended bikes only covered if they are in a locked building or are securely locked to an immovable object
Accidental Damage
  • Details
    • Buildings Cover for Accidental Damage to services, fixed glass and sanitary fittings
    • OPTIONAL Buildings Accidental Damage cover for other incidents
    • Contents Cover for Accidental Damage to home entertainment equipment, mirrors and glass
    • OPTIONAL Contents Accidental Damage cover for other incidents
  • Notable Exclusions
    • Does not cover to laptops, valuables during household removals, damage by pets
HomeServe
  • Details
    • OPTIONAL EXTRA
    • Cover to temporarily repair home emergencies related to drainage, water, electricity and gas supply to and within the property (e.g., blocked toilets, leaking pipes, breakdown of fuse box, etc.) or the main source of heating of the property (e.g., no hot water, no heating) or security (e.g., repairing broken locks, boarding up broken glazing, using tarpaulin to protect the property if roof tiles blown off, etc.)
    • accommodation up to £1,000 if your home is uninhabitable
    • up to £1,000 per call out, unlimited number of call outs
    • 24-hour HomeServe emergency 24-hour helpline (08000 512 658)
  • Notable Exclusions
    • Immersion heaters, combination cylinders, Elson tanks, thermal storage units, (e.g. Gledhill Boilermate), unvented hot water cylinders (e.g. Range Powermax) or their controls, air conditioning units, domestic appliances, frozen pipes that haven't caused permanent damage, pumps, etc.
Family Legal
  • Details
    • Included
    • 24-hour legal helpline (08000 514 004)
    • Legal costs up to £50,000

M&S Home Insurance Notable Exclusions

M&S home insurance exclusions include (but are not limited to) damage to fences, gates or hedges, loss or damage if you've been away for 60 days or more (occasional visits don't count), frost damage, damage by pets, subsidence (due to coastal or river erosion, settlement, faulty workmanship, etc.), etc.

A few exclusions stood out to us as particularly mentionable. You may want to keep them in mind if you go with M&S or as you're comparing different home insurance plans. It's always a good idea to read through the full list of exclusions in the policy documents as we've only mentioned some exclusions here and others may be more relevant to you.

  • 1. Standard building cover doesn't include loss or damage caused by storm to fences and gates.
  • 2. Contents cover doesn't include loss or damage during household removals to personal money, jewellery, watches, items of gold or platinum, stamps and coins.
  • 3. Theft or attempted theft from a nursing home or housing while attending full time education is excluded, unless forcible and violent means are used to gain entry or exit.
  • 4. Theft of unattended bicycles is excluded unless locked in a building or to an immovable object.
  • 5. For policies including Away From Home cover, theft from a vehicle is only included if the items are hidden from view, all windows are closed and the boot and all doors are locked—note, the policy documents do not specify a "theft from vehicle" limit (we frequently see a £1k or £2k limit from many other insurers).
  • 6. Those who leave their homes unoccupied for more than 90 days at a time won't have cover for malicious people or vandals, theft or attempted theft or water escaping from water tanks, pipes, equipment or fixed heating systems.

M&S Buildings & Contents Insurance: What's Covered?

Marks and Spencer home insurance protects against calamities such as fire, explosion, lightning, earthquake, smoke, water freezing in pipes, theft, storm, flood, escaping water and oil, subsidence (depending on cause, etc.), falling trees, branches and radio/TV aerials, etc.

Cover benefitsPremierStandard
Buildings coverUnlimited£1,000,000
Buildings accidental damageUnlimitedOPTIONAL
Contents coverUnlimited£100,000
Contents accidental damageUnlimitedOPTIONAL
Valuables£50,000£25,000
Valuables (single item limit)£15,000£10,000
New for old replacements (including clothes)IncludedIncluded
Garden contentsIncludedUp to £100,000
Storm damage to gates and fencesIncludedn/a
Up to 90 days unoccupancyIncludedIncluded
Protected no claims discountOptionalOptional
OPTIONAL
Contents away from home£50,000£25,000
Pedal Cycle away from home cover—worldwide cover for theft, loss or damage of your family’s bikesfrom £250 up to £15,000from £250 up to £10,000
Legal expenses£50,000£50,000
Home emergency cover£1,000£1,000

Other Useful Information

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