Sum Insured

Home Insurance is based on the Sum Insured

Home Insurance is based on the rebuild cost of your home. This is called your ‘Sum Insured’, and it will be the maximum we will pay to rebuild your home in the event of a natural disaster.

There are tools available to help you estimate the rebuild cost for your home, see Sum Insured calculators.

To find out more, read our Sum Insured Frequently Asked Questions.


What do I need to do?

Existing customers

Renewing your policy?

It’s a good time to check your Sum Insured figure each year when your policy comes up for renewal, to make sure it’s up-to-date and will still sufficiently cover the rebuild of your home. While your policy will include an adjustment for inflation, it won’t include any changes, additions or omissions to your property.

You will need to:

  1. Calculate your Sum Insured
  2. Contact us and let us know the new value

Switching Insurers?

Have you calculated your Sum Insured figure already? If yes, then check it’s correct, and your new policy covers everything in the same way as your previous policy, as cover can differ between insurance companies. Once you’re happy with the figure, use it to Get a quote.

Haven't calculated your Sum Insured, or just not sure? Calculate your Sum Insured or read our Sum Insured Frequently Asked Questions or contact us.


First time buying home insurance?

It’s important you don’t rely on market value or your purchase price to determine your Sum Insured. In most cases the rebuild cost will differ from both of these values, as they take into consideration different elements (e.g land). You will need to:

  1. Calculate your Sum Insured
  2. Use it to Get a quote

Want to know more, read our Sum Insured Frequently Asked Questions or contact us.

Sum Insured calculators

Every home is different and the rebuild cost will vary depending on a number of things, so it’s important you take the time to calculate a figure that is right for you.

As a homeowner, you are in the best position to know the details of your own home – so it makes good sense for you to determine your own rebuild cost. When calculating this cost, it’s important to take into account other items on your property, not just your house (for instance driveways, paving, fences, external garages and retaining walls). See ‘What to include in your Sum Insured’ for more information.

Some ways to help you calculate your Sum Insured include:

Online Sum Insured calculator

The Cordell Online Calculator provides estimated typical building replacement costs for standard residential homes. It's important to note that this calculator may not be suitable for homes with special features.

Free Cordell Sum Insured calculator

Contact an expert

A builder, architect, quantity surveyor or other valuation expert can provide an estimated rebuild cost for your property.  Use the links below to find an expert near you:

What to include when you calculate your Sum Insured

Below is a list of some of the things you need to consider when calculating your rebuild cost. Please note this is not a complete list, just a few suggestions to get you started. Some policy limits apply.
what to include in the sum insured for your house

House

Higher quality homes are more expensive to build. So consider:
  • Construction materials
  • Foundations
  • Size of house
  • Number of levels
  • Age of house
  • Standard of build
what to include in the sum insured for fixtures and fittings

Interiors

Consider the quality of fittings inside your home. Include:
  • Flooring
  • Insulation
  • Windows
  • Heating

what to include in the sum insured for outbuildings

Outbuildings

You need to include the cost to replace:
  • Garages
  • Carports
  • Sheds
  • Pool houses
what to include in the sum insured for demolition and removal

Demolition and Site Clearance

It's important you include:
  • Demolition and removal costs of your current property
  • Site clearance and preparation costs
  • If you are using the Cordell Online Calculator, these costs are automatically included

what to include in the sum insured for gardens and surrounds

Gardens & Surrounds

It's important you include:
  • Driveways
  • Paving
  • Fencing
  • Pools
  • Retaining walls
  • Tennis court
  • Water tanks
  • Septic tanks
  • Decks 

Sum Insured FAQs

For full details of what to include in your Sum Insured, please refer to our Home Insurance policy or for further information please see our FAQs below.

  • What is Sum Insured and how does it affect my Home Insurance?
  • AA Insurance offers Home Insurance based on a Sum Insured.

    You are responsible for providing us with the Sum Insured amount, determining its adequacy and keeping it up-to-date. To select a Sum Insured, you need to determine the cost of completely rebuilding your home, including features such as swimming pools, fences, sheds and paving. For full details of what to include in the Sum Insured, please refer to our Home Insurance policy.

  • Do I need to check and revise the Default Sum Insured on my renewal notice?
  • Yes. It is essential that you check the figure, and contact us if you need to make any revisions to make sure it’s up-to-date and will still sufficiently cover the rebuild of your home. While your policy will include an adjustment for inflation, it won’t include any changes, additions or omissions to your property, such as adding a car port, or removing a fence.
     
    If you don’t check or revise your Sum Insured, you could find yourself over or under-insured at claim time.
     
    It is also essential that you regularly review your Sum Insured and update it to reflect any significant improvements, extensions, or alterations you’ve made, such as building a deck, installing a swimming pool, or adding a new room.
  • How do I calculate my Sum Insured
  • There are some simple ways that you can get help with working out the cost of rebuilding your home, including:

    The Cordell Online Sum Insured calculator is a straight-forward online tool that provides estimated typical building replacement costs. Most of the questions asked can be easily answered by the homeowner, such as how many levels to the home? What are the exterior walls made of? There is a link to the Cordell Online Calculator on the AA Insurance website. It is important for you to be aware that the Cordell Online Calculator will only provide an estimate based on typical building replacement costs, and the cost of replacing a home will depend on the specific details of the home.

    The Cordell Online Calculator does not provide advice. If you want advice on the cost of replacing your home you should contact a builder, architect, quantity surveyor or other valuation expert. It’s important to note that the Sum Insured does not include the land, or what it would cost to buy your home. It is not correct to base the Sum Insured on the purchase price, rates valuation or QV of the home as these include the value of the land, and we don’t insure land. It is also important to note that the market value of your home does not equate to what it costs to rebuild it.

  • Why can't we work out the Sum Insured for you?
  • There are many more details that need to be taken into account than the information we have about your home, and because no one knows your home or situation better than you do, it needs to be up to you to provide your Sum Insured. Each home is unique; made from a variety of different materials, to different qualities and sizes, and it is important that the Sum Insured reflects this.

    If you get an online quote for your Home Insurance on aainsurance.co.nz, you’ll notice we’ve included questions from the Cordell Online Calculator. This is to give you an indication of how much your Sum Insured could be. However, it’s up to you to check this figure, to make sure it’s right for you and your circumstances.

  • What is the Cordell Online Calculator?
  • Cordell is an independent company that provides building replacement cost calculators that have been in use overseas for several years. Cordell has created a New Zealand version of its building calculator. The Cordell Online Calculator uses typical building replacement costs derived from Cordell’s industry research to provide an estimated building replacement cost. The Cordell online Sum Insured calculator does not take into account every possible feature of a home - it only takes into account the features and information that it asks you, the customer, to input.

    Cordell will only provide an estimate based on typical building replacement costs and the cost of replacing your home will depend on the specific details of your home.

    You are responsible for deciding whether the estimate provided by the Cordell Online Calculator is right for you to use it as the Sum Insured for your home.

    The Cordell Online Calculator does not provide advice. If you want advice on the cost of replacing your home you should contact a builder, architect, quantity surveyor or other valuation expert.

  • What do I need to do?
  • If I want to buy a new policy?

    If you are taking out a new policy with AA Insurance, you’ll need to provide a Sum Insured.

    There are some simple ways that you can get help with determining the Sum Insured. One way is to use an online building calculator, such as the Cordell Online Calculator.

    Cordell is an independent company that provides building replacement cost calculators that have been in use overseas for several years. Cordell has created a New Zealand version of its building calculator.

    The Cordell Online Calculator uses typical building replacement costs derived from Cordell’s industry research to provide an estimated building replacement cost. The Cordell Online Calculator does not take into account every feature of a home - it only takes into account the features and information that it asks you, the customer, to input.

    Cordell will only provide an estimate based on typical building replacement costs and the cost of replacing a home will depend on the specific details of the home.

    You are responsible for deciding whether the estimate provided by the Cordell Online Calculator is right for you to use it as the Sum Insured for your home.

    The Cordell Online Calculator does not provide advice. If you want advice on the cost of replacing your home you should contact a builder, architect, quantity surveyor or other valuation expert.

    If I already have a Home Insurance policy?

    If you’re an existing AA Insurance customer, it’s essential that you regularly review and revise your Sum Insured to reflect any significant improvements, extensions, or alterations you’ve made, such as building a deck, installing a swimming pool, or adding a new room. If you don’t, you could find yourself over or under-insured at claim time.  
     
    A good time to review your Sum Insured figure, and make sure it will sufficiently cover the rebuild of your home, is when your policy comes up for renewal each year. While your policy will include an adjustment for inflation it won’t include any changes, additions or omissions to your property.
Disclaimer:
This is general information and is not a recommendation, opinion or guidance on the Sum Insured that is appropriate for any of our customers.  Nor does this information provide any advice or opinion on the extent or adequacy of the cover provided by Sum Insured insurance. This information is not personalised financial advice and does not take into account the particular situation of our customers. Customers must make their own decision on the Sum Insured that is appropriate for their circumstances.

Sum Insured for Canterbury Customers

If you live in Canterbury, we've prepared some specific information about what Sum Insured means for you. View our Sum insured FAQs for Canterbury customers.