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Holiday swaps: are you covered?

With the summer holidays approaching, many of us are making plans for how we’re going to spend our time off. More and more people, apparently, are choosing to do ‘house swaps’: moving into someone else’s home for a few weeks, either here or abroad, and they move into yours. This seems like a great way to see other places with much lower costs.

So what are the implications for your household insurance? As the vast majority of these are non-commercial – ie no one makes any money out of it – then your normal household insurance shouldn’t be affected. However, it is advisable to let your insurer know what you’re doing just in case: non-disclosure could lead to problems should you need to make a claim.

You need to tell your insurer that your exchange partners are ‘non-paying guests’. Indeed, insurance companies should see this as a positive: your home is less likely to be broken into if there is someone staying there. But if it turns out that the visitors themselves are a little light-fingered – in other words, if theft occurs and there is no sign of forced entry – then you wouldn’t be covered.

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