Do you need home and contents insurance for your bach?

A bach is the Kiwi dream. Somewhere to head to every long weekend, holiday, Easter, and Christmas break. Somewhere filled with old board games and a well-used pack of cards. 

Figures suggest that there are approximately 50,000 baches in New Zealand, which equates to roughly one for every 100 Kiwis. 

If you’re that one in a hundred, you might be wondering if you need home and contents insurance for your bach. 

What determines a holiday home or bach?

First of all, let’s make sure we’re talking about the same thing. 

A bach – or holiday home in other parts of the world – is typically a small, modest home. They tend to have a certain style with four walls and a roof, and are traditionally made from whatever cheap materials you have lying around. 

The name itself comes from ‘bachelor pad’, and they became popular after World War Two when new roads across the country made it easier than ever for families to make weekend trips to the beach. 

And while they are historically found on beach fronts, they can also be by lakes, rivers, ski fields, or any of the other countless gorgeous locations across Aotearoa. 

Do you need home and contents insurance?

So the question is, even if your bach is a quaint space, do you still need home and contents insurance? It really depends on your own personal circumstances, so let’s have a look at some of the pros and cons.

Pros of home and contents insurance

Getting home and contents insurance for your bach can be a very wise move. In fact, you can even get specific holiday home insurance, which is designed for baches that aren’t occupied all the time (which adds particular risks such as undetected leaks or break-ins). 

Additionally, you can also consider insurance if you occasionally rent out your bach. This has become more common with the rise of Airbnbs and Book a Bach, but it also means that your property might see more damage with visitors coming and going more often. In this case, insurance can offer protection toward your assets, and you may need to make sure your policy covers you for damage done by renters.  

Overall, the pros of home and contents insurance for a bach are the same as the pros of home and contents insurance – peace of mind should something go wrong, your policy may cover the costs of repairs or replacements. 

Cons of home and contents insurance

A downside to getting home and contents insurance for a bach is the added cost. Especially if you are planning on renting it out while you’re not there, as these insurance policies may be higher to cover the additional risks. 

However, like any insurance, it’s important to carefully consider this extra cost against how much you had to save to buy a bach in the first place, and how much it might cost to pay for repairs or rebuilding out of pocket should the worst occur. 

Other considerations

The Insurance Council of New Zealand offers a few handy tips for anyone looking to protect their holiday home

First, take all the precautions you would with your main residence, such as installing and maintaining smoke alarms. 

You should also lock away sentimental or valuable items when you have others staying, and when you’re not there. 

Also, be careful to read reviews of renters before accepting any bookings. Insurance won’t necessarily cover damage to a holiday home if it’s done by a renter on purpose, so it’s best to take the time to ensure you know a bit about any rental guests so you’re comfortable they will be respectful of your home. 

What to keep in mind when choosing a home and contents insurance policy for a holiday home

  • How often you would be there
  • Whether you will rent it out 
  • What you will keep on the property
  • How long a policy allows the property to sit empty
  • Whether you can get a better deal by combining it with your main residence insurance
  • What kind of risks are involved with the property’s location 

Take the next step by exploring your options and making informed decisions based on what suits you and your bach best. Remember, the right choice can make all the difference in achieving your goals. Read more blogs like this on our Discovery Hub.