I remember reading one of Terry Pratchett’s first Discworld novels, where the concept of betting on buildings burning down, in-sewer-ants, led to a medieval town burning down. In fact it happened within about an hour of the document being signed.
Of course modern insurance is entirely different to the capers that go on in Pratchett’s humorous novels and it’s a subject that only tends to get our attention when we need to make a claim on it. We’ve paid our home and contents insurance ever since we’ve owned a house, which is just over ten years now. We never really thought about it until we had to claim though. In my minds eye house insurance is there to cover your house burning down (I blame Pratchett) or your house being broken into and what the Americans would term burgalarized. The sort of serious thing that you wouldn’t expect to happen in a lifetime if you were lucky.
However a couple of years ago we did make a claim on our home insurance and it wasn’t for any reason I’d ever considered. We noticed that wifey’s eternity ring that I bought from Liberty was missing one of it’s cluster of diamonds. Panic ensued; it must be in the house. It wasn’t. I ran around on the school run route with a powerful torch in the pitch dark, hoping that the torch light would pick out the diamond but it didn’t. After we’d calmed down from a period of upset, we realised our house insurance had the rings identified as valuable items that were covered away from the house.
A few phone calls and the ring was with a jewellery conservator that wifey knew through work being professionally fixed with a replacement diamond of the same clarity and cut as the others, all at the expense of the insurance company (less the excess of course).
Naturally we’d have rather it hadn’t happened in the first place but it definitely made the whole idea of paying for content insurance (I think building insurance is mandatory with a mortgage) a lot more palatable for us and it’s something we’d never consider being without now.