Is the Cheapest Insurance, the Best?

It can often be tempting to go with the cheapest insurance policy. With many people struggling for money, they may want to cut their expenses as much as they can and finding cheaper insurance is an option. However, the cheapest may not always be the best.

Whatever you are buying, you need to consider value for money. If you pay very little for something, then it will often not be such good quality as more expensive items. You may not think this matters, but it can do, when it comes to insurance.

If you never make a claim then it is not relevant. However, many people do claim on insurance and it is then that you want to get a good service. You want the staff to be quick and efficient so that things are sorted out as soon as possible. You want to make sure that you are covered for everything you need so you get the money back that you are expecting. If you pay less money, then you may find that you get less than you were expecting.

Cheapest Insurance

To avoid disappointment it is important to know exactly what you are getting or your money. This means that you will need to read the terms and conditions of the insurance policy. This could be tricky as often they are not very readable or have terms in that are not easy to understand. Another alternative is to check with the customer service staff. Ask them whether you will be covered for certain things and what you will get from the insurance.

It is good to talk to them anyway because you will get an idea of how friendly they are and how knowledgeable. When you make a claim this could be very important.

It is good to have an expectation of what you want from the insurance and to make sure that you will get that. For example make sure that you get a courtesy car while yours is being repaired after an accident or that your contents are insured against theft outside of the home, if you think that they should be.

So you do need to be careful as there are reasons why the insurance is cheaper. You will be getting less cover, but it may not be in a way that is important to you. Just make sure that you are getting the cover that you need and expect and then you will know whether the policy really does offer good value for money.

Mis-Sold PPI: The story so far

Payment Protection Insurance or PPI is a form of insurance policy created to allow the borrower to keep paying their mortgages and loans in case of unemployment, illness or other conditions that hinder the payment. PPI is usually purchased as an add on or a standalone policy and under normal conditions this policy is sound, however the application has been riddled with holes from issues with loans with mandatory PPI policies, case by case applications of the policy and disputes with refunds of unclaimed PPI. In most of the complaints brought to the ombudsman, the complainants didnt even know that they were sold the policy.

Investigations into these cases have found that the brokers who approved the loans were motivated to sell PPI because of the commissions they would get. They then began selling the insurance to their clients without the latters full understanding or need for the policy. In most cases of mis-selling, the policy became of no use to the buyers and has only given them headache, prompting a well merited future appointment with the financial ombudsman. Because of the unceasing complaints that have turned up, the City watchdogs (FSA) examined previous PPI sales, which led to a very interesting court battle. Among the many items that were found were:

Brokers describing PPI as a necessary add on to approve a loan
Brokers not properly explaining the policy completely
Payment Protection being sold to people who were already sick and unemployed
An estimated 16 million mis-sold PPI cases in the last decade

The alarming rate of these illegal activities and amount of evidence that showed up has led to the banks losing the case thus allowing many of mis-sold victims to get their money back. This victory meant that the lump sum and all consecutive payments with interest due to mis-sold PPI will be returned to the victims. If you’re currently under a plan with mis-sold PPI, all PPI payments will be returned and future payments plus interest will be cancelled.

If you were mis-sold or have reason to suspect your current or previous loans then you can rest assured that the ombudsman and the courts will be in your favour. Just remember to keep your documents ready, work with your local authorities and be patient with the process. You may also seek the help of a PPI info claims company, but they will be taking some of the money you receive.  It may take some time, but it may well be worth it as your claim may even be repaid with additional compensation.

Your New Flood Insurance Might Cover a Lot Less Than You Think!

If you’ve been watching the news and seeing the damage that Hurricane Irene and other natural disasters have brought to this country, you might be thinking about flood insurance. The National Flood Insurance Program is one of the most widely known insurance policies that actually covers flood, but you can also find private insurance groups that would be more than happy to extend you a policy — as you long as you can understand the fine print, of course.

The trouble with a lot of insurance policies and the disputes that often follow is that everything is good when you get the policy, but when you actually go to file the claim …things can get sour in a hurry. For example, you might not realize that your basic flood insurance policy only covers the damage to a home that starts above the ground floor. So the first floor of your home would naturally be taken care of, but the basement would be left out. That’s a lot of damage that you would have to cover out of pocket, which could definitely make life really difficult for you. The better thing to do would be to make absolutely sure that you know exactly what your insurance policy will cover in the event of flood.

Keep in mind that the more bells and whistles you request, the higher your premiums will be. Also, if you have a history of challenged credit, your premiums will also go up. One of the things that people hate about the insurance world is that the victors are usually the ones that look like the least amount of risk. So even if all of your previous insurance claims were valid, your insurance company is going to find you much more risky than someone that has never filed an insurance claim. It’s a process that turns people into numbers rather than individuals, but it is what it is.

That’s why you need to flex your power at the moment of truth — before you actually sign off on a new flood insurance policy. Look at a comprehensive policy that would cover not only mechanical equipment in your basement, but any carpeting, furniture, other flooring and even fixtures. These are the things that you will have to actually ask for and make sure that they are in your policy.

National Flood Insurance coverage is going to be very limited on items in your basement — very limited to only the essential items required to runt he house. So the water heater is something that’s going to be replaced, but the old sofa that you were storing down there isn’t going to be covered.

The federal program covers $250,000 towards rebuilding the home and 100,000 in contents.

A policy is only as good as the payer makes it — in other words, once you get your flood insurance and all of the supplemental policies that go with it, you’re going to need to make sure that you stay on top of the premiums. You cannot let any of the monthly or annual premiums lapse, or the policy will be cancelled. if you need to make arrangements because you’ve had a run of financial problems, that’s something that you’re going to have to work out with your insurance company.

It’s definitely worth it to look into flood insurance. Now that you have more information about the process, you can make even better decisions — get started today!

Who Really Needs an Umbrella Insurance Policy, Anyway?

Insurance is a tricky subject. A lot of people think about the insurance policies that everyone else talks about, like home, auto, and life insurance. Yet you might be surprised at all of the other types of insurance products out there. For example, there is umbrella insurance. This is something that a lot more people can use than they think. Yet in order to understand why umbrella insurance is so critical, a little bit of background information is required.

You see, all insurance policies have limits. These limits are going to depend on your insurance carrier’s risk profile for you, but every policy has limits. For example, let’s say that you are taking out coverage on your home. That coverage might have a limit of $300,000 dollars. But if a child jumps over the fence of your home that has a swimming pool and they drown or get seriously injured, your three hundred thousand dollar policy is not going to cover much of anything — and you will have to pay the difference between what the policy covers and the extra that is owed. That’s a lot of money out of pocket.

That’s actually where umbrella insurance steps in. It will cover the excess damages owed that fall outside of your general insurance policies. In the past, this used to be insurance that only wealthy individuals needed to have, but that’s no longer the case now. You will need to make sure that you cover yourself appropriately if you have at least 200,000$ in assets. Quite frankly, that’s not hard to do if you own a home — you’re going to be risking your biggest asset right then and there.

So going about getting umbrella insurance is something that just about everyone should think about — even if they might not realize it. Don’t rely on age old sayings like “only rich people need umbrella insurance”. If you’re starting a small business with a storefront, you’re going to need umbrella insurance too. The last thing that anyone wants to deal with is realizing that they aren’t as well protected as they think, but hiding in the dark about it isn’t going to help matters either.

So the next step that you must do is a little bit of comparison shopping. You always want to make sure you’re paying the right price for umbrella insurance coverage. You don’t want to just find yourself getting something that you think is good, only to find that you could have saved a lot of money and still been properly protected.

This is also a time where reading the fine print is a good thing. You want to make sure that you have all of your ducks in a row, so to speak. No one likes to think that they’re protected, only to find out how lacking their protection really was because they just filed a claim that got denied. The most common reason for a claim being rejected is because the events were not actually covered under the policy the way the policyholder thought they would be.

As a reminder to business owners, umbrella insurance is actually something that’s absolutely tax deductible, so make sure that you save your receipts so that your tax preparer can add that to your expense statement. Why would you want to pass up a tax deduction if you didn’t have to?

Overall, now is definitely the time to start thinking about umbrella insurance — why not start today?

Using Risk Management Principles To Get The Best Insurance Deals

Does money really matter in the world of insurance? In some ways, it does, but what matters more are the principles of risk management. We would be hard pressed to really argue that more money means a safer driver when it comes to auto insurance — when you have money, you can buy a faster car that might not necessarily be a safer car. Yet the dream of more money is something that attracts a lot of people — to the point where they get so far into the lottery that they’re trying to check Euromillions results even when they’re at work! Does that really hold the key to getting an insurance policy that will save you money? Not at all.

It’s all about risk management, and lowering your risk as much as possible. Believe it or not, insurance companies are going to look at your life as a whole. Married people generally get better rates than single people — even divorced people fare better. So if you’ve been living together for a while and you really want to squeeze out every last penny of savings that you can, you might want to think about getting married after all. of course, this is a very personal decision — we’re not saying that you should choose something so life-changing just because it’s going to save you money on your insurance. However, if you were going to get married down the line anyway, sooner is better than later when it comes to the amount of money that you can save.

Another thing that people don’t like to realize about the whole process of risk management is that your credit does play a role now. So think twice before you default on anything, because it really can come back to hunt you in the form of higher premiums. Who wants to pay more for the mistakes of the past? Well, nobody — but the fact remains that you’re going to have to get serious about the way the world works. In a perfect world, you credit wouldn’t really be an issue. However, insurance companies argue that drivers with good credit scores tend to file fewer claims and have fewer accidents than customers that have challenged credit.

At the end of the day, risk management has to give way to common sense as well. You’re going to want to make sure that you’re being as honest as possible with the people in charge. You want them to understand that it’s not just about saving money — you want them to review you as a person. If they can’t do that, well…there is more than just one insurance company, you know!

An Accident Claim Calculator Allows You to See Up Front How Much Money You Can Get

After you’ve been hurt in an accident, it’s pretty safe to say that there are a lot of things on your mind. Out of everything going on, the thing that you’re most concerned with is going to be how to get things together so that you can move on with your life. In order to do that, you’re going to need to seek compensation. Sure, nobody really likes to be the person that’s asking for compensation, but the reality is that if you’ve been in an accident where you were not at fault, it’s time to claim the compensation that you so richly deserve.

Yet before you go through with your full claim, it’s often nice to know where you stand. That’s really where a good accident claim calculator comes in, because this will let you see how much money you can get from your settlement. Many accident and legal sites that focus on this topic will have calculators that you can use. All you have to do is have an estimate of how much you’ve spent in terms of medical costs or what you’ve lost due to time off work, and those are the figures that you build a foundation from. Remember that’s okay to estimate — when you sit down and talk to a solicitor, you’ll be able to have a better idea of where you really stand. Yet you’ll find that if you come pretty close with the calculator, your results will also be pretty close. The only difference would be a higher settlement rather than a lower one.

You might wonder why insurance companies would even want to settle in the first place. That’s easy — they don’t want to be stuck with a long, drawn out trial where the jury could give you even more. But juries are fickle, and if you can push a good settlement offer on the table that satisfies your needs and takes care of your family properly, then it’s better to take that.

Worried that you won’t have access to a solicitor? Not a problem — there are plenty of skilled legal professionals that will take on your case without asking you to put in any money at all. That’s really the best way to get things done anyway — if you don’t win, you’re not out of any money either way. Why wouldn’t you want to go ahead and connect with the best legal expertise that you can get?

Once you’ve talked with a solicitor about your case and developed a unique plan of action, you’ll be glad that you made the effort!

Building Insurance Is an Excellent Idea In Any Season

These days, what used to be personal is now going commercial, but regular people are still benefitting from it. You might have gotten savvy enough to enter the world of real estate, and that’s definitely a good thing. However, if you’re going to really make a good run on things as a real estate owner and investor, you’re going to have to make sure that your property is protected from natural disasters, fire and flood as best as you can.

The best way to accomplish this goal is to go ahead and get building insurance. It might seem like an expensive venture, but the truth is that the benefits of having buildings insurance far outweigh the price that you pay for the premiums each month. Also, you can save a lot of money with building insurance if you’re willing to go ahead with an annual premium rather than a monthly premium. This is because you’re giving the insurance company a lump sum of money that can be used for corporate issues all at once, rather than them having to wait month after month and being concerned about whether or not you’re going to make that month’s payment.

What you will need to do to get started is to get some quotes. Like most things in life, you don’t want to just wander around hoping and praying that you’re going to be covered. You want to really think about how much coverage you need, and on what terms you need that coverage. Getting multiple building insurance quotes will allow you to figure out these details for yourself without having to struggle.

Of course, there are things that are going to naturally affect the type of coverage you can receive, like where the physical location of the structure is. Landlords that are trying to insure property in a high crime area are going to pay dearly for doing so — the chances of damage are just much high, for obvious reasons. The last thing that the insurance companies really want to have to worry about is actually processing many claims from you if they can avoid those claims simply by limiting their risk.

Risk management is the game that the insurance companies excel at, and they are very quick to change the terms if you’re going to end up being a more risky endeavor than they’re willing to take on. Still, no matter where you are, the truth is pretty clear: building insurance is an excellent idea through any season!

Insurance Quotes

There are many companies out there now which offer insurance. This means that if you want to do a big market survey before renewing then you have to get loads of insurance quotes.

It can get very tedious, filling out the insurance quote form to get one figure and then start all over again with another company. This is why comparison websites have become so popular. You need only fill out one form and then you will get about 20 different quotes from various companies. This is a great way to get quotes more quickly however it may not be the best way to save money.

The company that runs the comparison website will get commission on every sale that is made using a lead from their site. This means that they only include companies which give them a good amount of money. Therefore, some major companies will be missed out. Also some companies keep their prices down by not being on comparison websites.

The best solution is to use a comparison website so that you get an idea of prices and then also get some quotes from companies that do not appear on them. If you do not like filling up forms then phone a few up, they will be able to give you a quote over the phone and they will fill the form in for you. If you have a complication with your form, perhaps if you have had an accident or something, it may not be able to be completed on line anyway so phoning could be quicker.

It is worth thinking about getting some quotes when it is renewal time and spending some time considering them as it can be possible to save a lot of money. Just make sure that you read the terms and conditions to ensure that you are covered in the policy for everything that you need to be.

Can you afford your insurance cover?

Over the years consumers have taken out many different types of insurance cover to protect them against certain situations and circumstances. The insurance cover industry has enjoyed a lot of business for many years, with people taking out all sorts of cover from Halifax home insurance, contents insurance to pet insurance, medical insurance, dental insurance, vehicle insurance, income insurance, payment protection insurance, life insurance, critical illness insurance, and more.

However, all of these insurance policies cost money, and this is something that has created something of an issue over recent months. In the past households have managed to budget for the various insurance policies that they have needed in order to enjoy peace of mind and protect themselves and their loved ones. However, over recent months the financial situation has changed for many households, and increased costs have resulted in many having to find ways of cutting back on their outgoings.

Households have looked at a variety of ways to cut back on their monthly outgoings in order to weather the increased costs such as higher energy bills, rocketing petrol prices, increased food inflation, and higher borrowing costs. It seems that one of the ways in which consumers are looking to cut back on their outgoings is by looking more closely at their insurance policies to see which ones they can cut back on and which they can cancel altogether.

Officials have stated that this situation means that the insurance industry could suffer huge losses amounting to £1.5 billion, with people either reducing their cover or cancelling altogether. A survey was carried out by Deloitte, and this showed that over a quarter of consumers – around 26% – are looking to reduce the amount of money that they spend on insurance cover over the coming twelve months, which spells bad news for the insurance industry.

Motor insurance has gone up in cost over recent months, and around 18% of consumers are looking to downgrade their vehicle insurance cover to a lower level, which will work out cheaper in terms of premiums. Around 26% of consumers said that they would be looking to either reduce or cancel their payment protection insurance cover over the coming twelve months too, and it is thought that the PPI industry will really suffer as a result of lack of affordability amongst consumers.

One insurance industry professional said that whilst he understood the thinking behind consumers’ actions in reducing or cancelling cover it was also important for consumers to think carefully about the repercussions of cancelling certain insurance policies, as they could suffer financially in the longer term.

He said: ‘At a time when households have less disposable income, it is understandable that many will look at how they can reduce their spending. However, consumers should think carefully about which types of insurance they most need in a downturn. A short-term saving could cost a lot should an accident occur and adequate insurance cover isn’t maintained.’