A premium return for a bit of work

  Stuartli 21:27 05 Feb 2009

A few days ago the renewal notice for the building and contents insurance landed on the front door mat.

The contents revealed that the renewal premium had gone up for the second year in succession after switching to a new, household name insurance company.

This time the demand was for more than £350, almost £50 more than in 2008.

So I've been checking out individual insurance companies' websites, as well as using the comparison sites - main problem was that too many listed by the latter sites detailed firms that were either unknown or just too cheap to be true.

However, tonight, one of the comparison sites brought up a hefty list of potential challengers for my money, with one at the top of the list (five star rating) bringing an "I don't believe it" reaction.

Yes, you've guessed it. It's my current insurer, but with a quote some £165 lower than the renewal and one or two extra features.

So I rang them, pointed out my renewal was due and then casually disclosed the lower price on offer from them.

It's to the credit of the call centre operative that the reaction was positive, the information checked out and confirmed immediately on the database, and the assurance that the lower price would be available.

So I renewed on the spot, but without a little bit of work I would have paid considerably more merely by renewing on-line, resigned to accepting what seemed the inevitable annual higher premium cost.

  newman35 21:45 05 Feb 2009

Just like the banks/building societies, who seemed to always have better deals for the 'new' customers.
AS you say, certainly pays to check.

  rickf 22:01 05 Feb 2009

And the general advise for motorists is to cahnge insurers around every 2 years for the same reason provided you have protected no claims.

  oresome 22:06 05 Feb 2009

Not an option that's open to me I'm sorry to say.

Only standard risks insurance is ever quoted on-line. If you have suffered any cracks or subsidence at any time in the past, you are excluded.

It can be one of the last questions asked, which can be very annoying having spent 20 minutes answering the rest of the questions.

Note that the original insurer will continue to insure you at standard risk following repairs.

  spuds 22:56 05 Feb 2009

I think that you will find the same rule applies to most insurance companies, regarding price matching their own renewal prices.And that definitely includes other type of insurance cover as well.

Two years ago, I had three totally different internet prices from the same company using comparison websites, which all was far cheaper than the renewal quote. Made a telephone call, and explained my findings, and the call centre agent accepted the lowest quote,and was pleased to do so!.

The same thing applied to my car insurance last week. I have now gone back to an insurance company that I used three years ago.

Of course we are not being ripped off, its all part of the commercial worlds marketing strategy's ;o)

  Stuartli 23:27 05 Feb 2009

I thoroughly check out car and house insurance cover deals on-line when they are due for renewal, but I've never before come across such a substantial discount from an insurance company's own renewal quote.

  anskyber 23:46 05 Feb 2009

Why are you surprised?

It's standard practise, in my experience for renewal notices to be above the searched price. It happens all the time.

Obviously the "trap" is to get you as a customer then hope you do not search again.

  Stuartli 08:42 06 Feb 2009

I'm not the slightest bit surprised.

It's merely a means of guiding some who may not be aware that a little effort can sometimes prove rewarding.

In the case of my car insurance, Zurich has actually reduced the renewal premium from the previous year and it was already extremely reasonable.

  anskyber 09:25 06 Feb 2009

Oh I see.

It must have been your comment of "I don't believe it" reaction which confused me.

  laurie53 11:16 06 Feb 2009

I had the misfortune to drop my camera a few years ago.

After excess it cost the insurance company around £75, my first claim for about fifteen years.

No insurance company, other than my current one, wants my business for house, contents, car, personal, accident or any other risk

  Stuartli 13:16 06 Feb 2009

>>of "I don't believe it" reaction which confused me.>>

Yes, the sheer size of the percentage drop in the premium...:-)

In fact the confirming e-mail stated the final premium had been discounted from a total of more than £430, so the apparent "saving" was nearer £250 than £166.....

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