a simple guide to getting it right when buying insurance

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No Claims Discount Expires After 2 Years | Protected No Claims Discount Does Not Protect Your Premium | Manipulating Your Details to Gain a Better Price Could Invalidate Your Policy | You Don't Automatically Get Driving Other Cars With Comprehensive Cover | Should I Send Copies of Documents to My Broker/Insurer? Yes | Each Policy Earns It's Own No Claims Discount, You Can't Use It Twice | Insuring Your Child's Car In Your Name Is Called Fronting And Is Fraud! | Don't Assume Your Company Car No Claims Discount Will Be Accepted By Your New Insurer - Check First! | Counterpart Licences Abolished, You May Still Have To Provide a Code From DVLA to your Underwriters to Check Your Details | Motorbility Policies Do Not Earn a No Claims Discount | Motoring Endorsements Are Declarable For 5 Years


At this point I was rudely introduced to the minefield that is insurance - Boom!!

Buying Insurance - What’s It All About?

What do you know about buyingInsurance Policy Form with Pen adn Glasses - Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/pictures-of-money/17121703798 insurance?

“It’s expensive”, “a rip off”, “not worth having”, They Never Pay Out”, etc!!When I first went to buy a moped at 16 years old, my parents were a little apprehensive, but as my older brother had already been granted this permission, they couldn’t really say no!!  Well, thankfully I’m still here to tell the tale and I’ve had my fair share of spills along the way.  Anyway, I didn’t even realise that I needed insurance or for that matter what it was, that was grown up stuff, I was still at school!!

Having left school, my first job was working in a Bank and on retuning to my bike in the multi-storey car park after work one evening,  I discovered (when the bike wouldn’t start), some scum bag had thieved my carburettor (remember those?).  I hastily dashed to my insurance brokers (luckily in the same town that I worked in), to advise of said pilferage and was told I’ll need an estimate for replacement and that my excess was £50.  ‘Err, what’s an excess’, I asked and he said ‘basically it’ll need to cost more than £50 to be worth claiming’.  Off I ran, further into the night to the motorcycle spares shop about a mile up the road.  The oil laden, bearded, tattooed, larger sized gentleman was very helpful and advised he could procure me one for £52.50 and have it there by tomorrow, ‘Yes’, I thought, ‘I can claim’.  I sprinted back to the brokers (in my now becoming sweat filled suit), bursting through the door at 2 minutes to closing to collect my £52.50, so I could go and buy my new carburettor.

At this point I was rudely introduced to the minefield that is insurance - Boom!! a fuller explanation now given to me from the insurance broker gave me realisation of what an excess actually is - shattering my intention to claim for the carburettor.  Yes, I could have claimed for £2.50, but lose my impending first years no claims discount.  This further made me think what a waste of money my insurance was, as I couldn’t claim for the one thing I wanted to.  Boo Hoo!! I hear you cry - The point is, a lot of people don’t generally understand insurance, after all it’s not in the school curriculum, so your insurance education is likely have come from your parents or friends - Ever played Chinese Whispers?  You’re starting to get my drift, right!!  People’s understanding of insurance is often misconstrued.  So, being told something is different to what you’ve been ‘taught’, makes it even more difficult to swallow when you get told the opposite by your insurer or broker.

When I started working in insurance, I always went out of my way (and still do - although the regulations force this now, I would do it anyway), to explain to people what an excess is and how it works; especially if someone is looking to claim.  I have always put myself in the customers’ shoes, because I know what it’s like when you want to claim, only to run around all over the place (literally) trying to get estimates to find out you can’t claim anyway.

Buying insurance these days is convenient and simple, but the aggregator/comparison sites are more interested in you buying through their site, than your details being correct. Let’s be clear on this, Comparison Sites are a business who make their money from the insurers and brokers, not you.  They make their money by charging them for policies being sold through their sites. As such, they make the sites incredibly user friendly - perhaps too user friendly - so you can enter your details quickly by answering the short visible version of a question, rather than reading the full question which you may have to click on a “?” Or “!” to view. You need to make sure that you exercise caution and that the facts you enter are correct, or potentially end up uninsured or having to pay an additional premium. Sounds obvious? Don’t be so sure; Mistakes can easily be made, I see it all the time!

Under the Consumer Insurance Act 2012 insurers must ask relevant questions, but once those questions have been asked the onus is on the policyholder to disclose the information, answer the questions correctly and be careful not to make any misrepresentations.  So basically, if they’ve asked it, you have to answer it truthfully and don’t make a mistake or enter information to favour your premium rather than the truth.  If they haven’t asked the question you don’t have to volunteer it, like you used to under the old rules of utmost good faith.

We don’t sell insurance on this site, but we can tell you how to buy insurance online properly. Having worked or working in the insurance industry, we have seen time and time again how people don’t understand insurance or give it the time it deserves, until it’s too late. IBG is here to guide you through buying your insurance and to let you know of the many pitfalls they can accidentally get into, because they either don't fully understand the question, don't read things properly, can't be bothered to read them, don't listen when speaking to an insurer or broker when questions or terms and conditions are being read out to them, or they just assume everything they think they know about insurance and their answers are correct. Unless you work in insurance then you probably have misconceptions and are likely to get things wrong!!  Even if you used to work in insurance, it is a changing and evolving environment; what might have been true 5 years ago, might not be today.

Before you get any quotes, check that you have all the information you need, such as licence dates, conviction dates (for all drivers, not just the policyholder), claims dates, sums insured etc - DON’T GUESS!!!

Insurance is calculated on the risk that the insurer is taking on. You cannot compare your insurance with your neighbours, friends, parents, spouse or partner etc. Even if you drive the same car as your best friend who's the same age as you, there are other factors that will affect your premium. The only thing that won't affect your premium is your name and gender; every other question an insurer asks in the proposal form or online application has a bearing on what you will pay and what terms will be applied. These are the facts; and facts are anything that can affect the rating or acceptance of the risk.

Not giving the correct information on a website or to a broker or intermediary, can affect your insurance and could mean no insurance or increased premiums, don't guess be prepared with correct figures for No Claims Bonus, Licence Dates, Conviction Dates, Claim Dates and Costs, Sums Insured etc. If you are not sure then check them before you commit to buy. Also, make sure if you are buying online that you check the details you have entered are correct, you normally need to review and confirm that you have. Also, you will not be able to buy online before you confirm you have read and understood the terms and conditions of the insurer or broker and there should be a link to do this. If you just click that you have read the “T’s and C’s” then you don’t really have any redress should you have made an error, whether it was a genuine mistake or not.


Under the Consumer Insurance Act 2012 insurers must ask relevant questions, but once those questions have been asked the onus is on the policyholder to disclose the information, answer the questions correctly and be careful not to make any misrepresentations…