May 27, 2011

Yearly checklist a must for Home and Contents: Are you paying too much?

Many of us stick with the same home and contents insurance for a long time. This is not always recommended, and you should take your payment reminder notice for the coming year as a starting point for research on what is the best deal for you. There are a number of reasons why you should be doing this. Here is a look at a yearly insurance checklist and other suggestions you will find very useful.

1. Getting Quotes: Getting quotes does not have to be a long and drawn out process. Most, if not all the good insurers in your country will have internet quoting tools. You should be getting a minimum of 4 of these each year. Getting 5 is highly suggested.

2. Comparison sites: Look for credible online consumer rating and comparison sites and determines the insurance companies that perform the best. You are looking for the highest payout rating. The payout rating is a ratio that is based on the number of pay outs compared with claims. This ratio will change with time, and this is why it is important to re-check each year.

3. Online Quote even when renewing: Believe it or not, you might be able to get a lower quote from your insurer's online quoting tools compared with the cost in your yearly renewal letter. This happens because of many reasons, for example, there is increased competition in the market which causes the insurer to reduce their prices, or have a more tailored approach to insurance. Your letter may be based on an out-of-date policy or your situation may have changed. Always check on your insurer's site and get a new quote each year. If the price of the online quote is lower, contact your insurer.

4. Pay Extra Attention to Excess: Excess changes may be substantial without the price of premiums changing. It can be easy to forget the exact amount. Some insurance companies may increase the amount you have to pay for excess, in order for them to keep their premiums at the same price as last year.

5. Understand No Consistency: It is important to understand there is rarely an insurer which is consistently the best and has the best price. If it was a race, we would see different companies in the lead each year. To get the most out of your household budget, it is wise to seek out the best at the best price, which may mean changing your insurer each year.

Never stick with any insurer out of habit or belief it will be to your benefit. There is no reason to stay with any insurer if you can get a better product, better service and a better price with another. The best home insurance companies will have the most competitive rate and policy now.

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