UK motorists are potentially storing billions of pounds worth of items in their cars, despite the fact that a car is broken into every 13 seconds in the UK, according to the latest research from Confused.com.
Using cars as extensions of homes is becoming increasingly common with a potential 7 million drivers storing items worth more than £200 in their cars, and 2.8 million drivers storing items worth more than £400.
Nearly a third (29%) of Londoners use their cars for storage, due to a lack of room in their homes. However, Londoners are not the only ones who claim to lack storage in their homes. Nearly 1 in 5 (19%) 25-34 year olds are in the same predicament, with their boots being used to hoard items such as sat navs, books, glasses and even sports equipment like golf clubs.
Another significant reason for drivers leaving valuable items in their cars is forgetfulness, with nearly three in four (72%) people claiming that they frequently leave items in their cars simply because they forgot to remove them.
Will Thomas, head of motor insurance at Confused.com, says:
“While cars can be viewed as providing extra storage space for some, especially in areas such as London where homes tend to be comparatively smaller, it is ill-advised to store expensive items such as golf clubs in cars for long periods of time.
“If it is necessary to store personal possessions in cars, it is important that all precautions are taken to make sure that theft is prevented, not least locking the car and storing items out of sight – failure to do so could invalidate any insurance claim. But, undoubtedly, leaving any item in a car will increase the chances of theft.”
“Should any items be stolen from cars, it is better to claim on home contents insurance as car insurance only typically covers belongings up to the value of £250. Although, homeowners will need to ensure they have added this option (personal items away from home) to their policy. Most providers will ask for any items valued at more than £1,000 to be specified on the policy.
As with any insurance policy, people should check the terms and conditions to ensure that it is right for their needs.”