What type of home insurance do I need? 

The type of home insurance you need depends on your property type and what you are looking to insure. In this article, we compare the different types of home insurance to help you identify what kind of home cover you may need, based on your own requirements.

What are the main types of home insurance available?

To understand what type of home insurance is the best one for your needs, it’s important to understand the differences between buildings and contents cover, buildings only and contents only insurance policies.

Buildings and Contents insurance

This type of home insurance is a combined package cover that protects your home itself and its contents. You should only choose this type of cover where you own and live in your home. Learn more about our buildings and contents insurance.

Buildings only insurance

Buildings insurance covers the costs of repairing or rebuilding the structure of your property. It covers the physical structure of a property, such as walls, floors and roof. It also covers permanent fixture and fittings such as, fitted kitchens, bathroom suites and built in wardrobes. It does not cover contents or your personal belongings. Learn more about our buildings only insurance.

Contents only insurance

Contents Only Insurance covers your own personal items and belongings. It covers all items that aren’t fixed features in your home. Items covered would include, furniture, electrical items, clothes, jewellery and money. If your renting and want to insure your own personal items, this cover is ideal for you. Learn more about our contents only insurance.

How do the Home Insurance policies compare?

The following table can help you compare the home insurance policies available with Zurich. The policies marked with a ✔ are included in the insurance covers.

Policy Covers

Buildings Insurance

Contents Insurance

Buildings & Contents Insurance

Loss or damage caused by sudden and unforeseen events

such as: Fire, Storm, Flood, Subsidence, Theft, Escape of

Water, Escape of Oil and Malicious Damage.



Buildings replacement – up to sum insured to repair, replace

or rebuild your property in the same form.


Legal Liability as owner of the property for bodily injury or

accidental property damage.


Damage to Underground Pipes and Cables


Tracing a leak at the home


Contents replacement – up to sum insured to repair or

replace your contents as new.


Replacing locks if the house keys are stolen, up to €700


Unlimited cover for replacing food in freezer or fridge, if

appliance breaks down or after a power failure.


Temporary removal of contents.


Alternative accommodation – if your home can’t be lived in

following a claim.


Tenant liability – your liability for damage to the landlord’s



Legal Liability as owner or occupier of the home for bodily

injury to domestic employees.


Legal Liability as occupier of the home for bodily injury or

loss of or damage to property.


Personal Legal Liability.


Accidental Damage




All Risks/Personal Possessions.






Family Legal Expenses




Family Personal Accident.




What type of Home Insurance do I need to buy a house?

It isn’t a legal requirement for you to have Home Insurance, but most mortgage lenders will insist you have buildings cover in place. If you don’t have a mortgage but own a property, it is advisable to have Home Insurance for your protection as it will cover your property against damage or loss.

Although Contents Insurance is not compulsory to buy a house, you might want to consider it, to ensure your personal belongings are also covered.

What type of Home Insurance do I need as a landlord?

As a landlord, home insurance for your rental investment property should include Buildings cover and financial protection against loss of rent (subject to policy limit). If your rental property is furnished you may also consider adding some contents cover. Landlord insurance isn’t compulsory, but some lenders may require it if you are applying for a buy-to-let mortgage. Learn more about our landlord insurance tailored for investment properties.

What type of Home Insurance do I need as a tenant/renter?

If you are a tenant or renter and looking for Home Insurance, the best type of insurance for you would be contents only insurance tailored for renters. Our renter’s insurance doesn’t cover the building, but only your possessions or personal items, plus your liability for damages to the landlord’s building. Learn more about what our renters insurance includes.

What type of Home Insurance do I need for a holiday home?

Your holiday home is exposed to the same risks as your primary home, and in some cases greater risk. Buildings insurance is a good starting point for your holiday home. At Zurich Ireland, we offer a second home insurance policy to give you extra peace of mind. Learn more about our Holiday Home insurance policy.

To learn more about the differences and compare our homeowners, landlords, renters and second home insurance policies visit our home insurance benefits page.

Comparing Home Insurance Quotes at Zurich Insurance

You can quickly compare our home insurance policies by using our quote generator tool for free. You’ll be asked who occupies the property to determine the residential status of your property (main home, holiday home, investment property etc.), if you are a landlord or tenant and how much content cover you need. This will automatically select the type of home insurance cover that best suits you whether it is a home and content, buildings only or content only cover.

Compare home insurance quotes 

Terms, conditions and underwriting criteria may apply.

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