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Home insurance tips and advice

House and contents cover from Hastings Direct.

Here you'll find advice, information and top tips on everything from home security and flooding to digital crime.

Buildings guides

Fire safety

When it comes to your home, it's important to take every step to protect you and your loved ones from a fire breaking out. Read our guide to fire prevention and what to do if there is a fire.

Flooding tips

More than 5.5 million homes in England and Wales are at risk of flooding. If you're concerned that your home might be one of them, our guide contains information on what to do in the event of a flood, as well as top tips on protecting your belongings.

Preparing your home for winter

Harsh winter weather takes its toll on your home, so you need to give it extra love and attention during the colder months. Regular maintenance is key to keeping the building in tip-top condition – read our guide on how to winter-proof your home.

Subsidence insurance

We all know what subsidence is, but what causes it, and what are the tell-tale signs that a home might be at risk? Read our guide to find out.

For your home

Home appliances

We rely on lots of appliances every day, from our fridge freezers and ovens to our TVs and laptops. But what would you do if one of those appliances suddenly stopped working? Here are the different ways you can protect your household appliances and what your rights as a consumer are.

Home improvements

Certain modifications can add significant value to your home; but before throwing your money at large-scale projects, you need to be sure you'll see a good return on your investment. Find out what home improvements can add value to your property.

Home makeover? What your insurer needs to know

Are you planning to revamp your home this year? Upgrading the kitchen, adding an en suite or converting your loft can all add value to your home when you come to sell.

How to find a good tradesman

As any homeowner knows, there always seems to be a job that needs doing or a task that needs attention around the house. Sometimes it might just be a touch of DIY that you can take care of yourself, but other situations will call for a professional to make the required repairs.

How to make your home green

Now more than ever, it’s easy to make simple changes that lower emissions and save energy. Running an eco-friendly house means more money in your pocket and makes a positive impact on the environment. It’s a win-win. Find out how to make your home green with our handy guide.

Recycling at home

We all have a responsibility to do our bit for the environment, and recycling at home can be a great way to limit our impact on the planet. We simplify the rules on what you can recycle and how.

Why you should regularly calculate your contents insurance

You can probably think of a hundred things you'd rather be doing this weekend than calculating your home contents insurance. But when you take into account only 48% of policies increase the sum insured at renewal to match general price increases, it's a task you need to stay on top of. Our guide gives you tips on how to work out what to cover.

Crime & security

Are your personal belongings protected?

Our homes are crammed full of our precious belongings. This doesn't just include valuable things like TVs, laptops and games consoles, but also the more sentimental items – like family photos or ornaments passed down through generations. Are your personal belongings protected?

Digital crime

Be careful about how much personal information you share on the web. Being too open could leave you vulnerable to digital crime and could impact on any insurance claims. Read our guide for some tips on how to stay safe online.

Home security tips

From installing CCTV to using light switch timers when you're on holiday, there are plenty of things you can do to ensure the security of your home both indoors and out. Everything you need to know can be found in our home security guide.

Keeping children safe around the home

Keeping your children safe is every parent's top priority, but there's a lot around the house that could prove hazardous, especially to little ones, some tips about keeping children safe around the home.

What to do after a burglary

The idea an intruder has entered your house can come as a shock. After all, your home is your safe place, where you and your family should be able to rest easy. It can be even more distressing if valuable possessions or sentimental items have been taken. What should you do in the immediate aftermath.

A beginner's guide to propagation

The warmer months motivate many of us to step outside and get gardening. This year, rather than buying plants, why not have a go at growing your own? It's much more rewarding and can save you some cash, too. We've put together this handy guide for green-fingered beginners, explaining all you need to know about plant propagation.

A first time buyer's guide to spotting damp

For many people, house hunting is an exciting experience. With each property you view, as well as deciding whether or not you can picture yourself living there, you need to be on the lookout for signs that may point to underlying issues that could end up costing a lot of money to put right.

Buying your child a bike

Everyone remembers their first bike and who taught them to ride it. If the time's come to pass on all you've learned to your little one and buy them their first set of wheels, we've put together a handy guide to help you out.

Buying your first home

Buying your first home is hugely exciting and it's probably the biggest financial decision you'll ever make. Before you start viewing potential buys, you need to get your head around the costs you'll have to cover once you've had an offer accepted.

Creating kerb appeal

Planning on putting your home on the market? If you want to get the best possible price there's one important thing you need to do before ringing the estate agent: get the entrance to your home in order.

Five landlord's responsibilities you may not be aware of

Every landlord has a long list of responsibilities for the properties they let. These include everything from issuing rental agreements to making sure properties are safe. But there are a handful of other legal landlord duties that aren't as obvious, so let's take a look at five of them.

Five top tips to get your home ready for sale

Thinking of selling up? If you want it to be a fast, stress-free process, and for your home to sell for the best possible price, you need to spend some time giving it a little TLC before it goes on the market. If you're after some inspiration, here are five top tips to help you prepare your home for sale.

Food storage advice

Never know where to store your eggs? A guide to storing food safely.

Frozen and burst pipes: how to prevent and deal with them

As temperatures drop during the winter months, your home's water pipes are at risk of freezing. When water freezes, it expands and causes the pipes to crack and burst under the increased pressure.

Green fingers: what to plant and when

If you're just about to put your green fingers to the test, we thought it might be useful to share a simple guide to sowing and growing popular starter fruit, veg and flowers.

Gutter maintenance top tips

Whether your gutters are plastic, cast iron or pressed steel, they should be cleared twice a year. Ideally, one of those times will be in late autumn/early winter – or any time you spot one of these signs:

How to deal with mould and mildew in the bathroom

Mould and mildew are two types of fungi that thrive in moisture-rich areas like bathrooms. You can find it on ceilings and walls, around window frames and on tile sealant or grout.

How to make your home pet friendly

Our pets are great company and heaps of fun. If you're just about to welcome one into its 'furever' home, here are some tips.

Is being a bad neighbour illegal?

Unless things turn nasty, the police are unlikely to get involved with these problems, so what should you do? Let's look at some of the top complaints.

Nightmare DIY jobs you're most likely to ignore

This Halloween, ghosts, witches and zombies will take to our streets but are there scarier things lurking inside your home? If you're ignoring a list of nightmarish DIY tasks it might be time to face your demons – a small DIY task could quickly turn into something much bigger if you ignore it.

Seven signs you need a new boiler

Having your boiler break down at any time of the year is a nuisance. But it can be a real nightmare if it happens in the middle of winter, when you need your boiler the most. Regular maintenance helps prevent boiler mishaps, but doesn't stop them from happening altogether – do you need a new one?

Smart Christmas ideas

Supermarket shelves stocked to the brim with mince pies and advent calendars can mean only one thing: the festive season is upon us. We've handpicked some of our favourite smart devices that are currently on the market: Smart Christmas ideas.

Spring clean your garden!

Spring is the perfect time to don your gloves and get to work making your garden look fabulous again. Do all the hard work now and, by summer, you'll be able to kick back, relax and enjoy yourself – here are some top tips.

Tell-tale signs it's time to replace your windows

Windows play a huge role in your home's insulation and energy efficiency. Plus, a good set of windows will improve its kerb appeal, which can help you get the highest price if you come to sell.

Top tips for a greener home

We could all do a little more to protect our planet. Making just a few small tweaks to your lifestyles can make a big difference to the size of your carbon footprint. If you're keen to go green, the first place you should look to make changes is at home.

Top tips for a successful spring clean

Spring has officially sprung, meaning that now's the perfect time to don your finest marigolds and get your home ship-shape for the warmer, lighter months ahead! Here are our top tips for a thorough spring clean.

Types of home insurance

Not sure what level of cover you need for your home? Hastings Direct offers three types of home insurance, each offering a host of benefits as standard. These guides explain what's included in each type of policy, so you can find cover best suited to your needs.

Ways to prepare your home for sale

When it comes to selling your home, you'll want to make sure it's sold for the best possible price. Making a good impression on potential buyers and maximising the value of your home requires a good deal of preparation. But your effort is sure to pay off, and could potentially add thousands of pounds to your home's selling price. To help you out, here's a list of tips for preparing your home for sale.

What are tenants responsible for

If a kitchen cupboard door falls off, is the tenant or landlord responsible for fixing it? The starting position is if a task requires a specialist skill, it falls to the landlord to sort out. But it's not always that easy – so let's take a look at this sometimes confusing area.

Who's responsible for drain repairs?

Many of our homes are connected by a system of drains and sewers. When these pipes get blocked, the issue needs to be sorted as soon as possible to prevent smells, leaks or even flooding. But if a drain gets blocked, what should you do and who has to pay for it?

Home insurance

At Hastings Direct, we know how important your home and its contents are to you. That's why we offer home insurance that covers you for the unexpected expense that theft, loss and damage can bring. Plus you can choose from a great range of optional extras.

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