Home Insurance 2020

Sadly we are seen as cash machines. A couple of years my motorbike insurance went from under 100 to over 400. I’d made no claims and nothing had changed. Needless to say I shopped around and got it for less than 100.

Pet insurance up 40% this year, but shopping around didn’t help.

I understand companies need to make a profit but they rely on the apathy of customer, so every renewal in this house gets compared.

If the amount saved is not huge then I may stay with a provider, but that depends on whether I’ve had to deal with them, and their response.

Some companies are far more likely to up fees than others. The mentioned over 50s company were particularly bad at that. It may have changed but don’t assume they have your back as you get older.


As I stated earlier, I am a retired insurance broker with 45 years in the industry.

Most of you here appear to be buying your cover direct from the insurers. Why not let a broker do the work for you? My premium has changed no more than £30 in the 5 years since I retired & actually went down £7 this year with a major insurer that I have faith in when it comes to making any claims.

The direct writers, including the big names currently buy in your business cheap & usually apply a large price hike at first renewal, hoping you either won’t notice or you can’t be bothered to shop around each year. They don’t really care if you renew or not, there are plenty of other fish in the sea.

This situation may change as the Financial Conduct Authority have just demanded that insurers play fair & offer the same premiums to both new & existing customers. It is possible that this could come in force sometime next year but I understand that insurers may strongly resist.

An insurance broker will be desperate to hold onto your business by quoting you the best terms possible as, at best, they will only break even on the commission they are paid in the first year of the policy. The profit starts to be earned from year two onwards.

Ian2001 made a lot of good points earlier in this thread & I will try not to repeat them. I would however add to his comments as follows:-

1 Check that the overall is sufficient to replace all your contents at replacement cost, not just you Hi Fi. If your Hi Fi is worth £20,000 & the rest of your house contents another £50,000 but you only allow 25,000 for them you will receive a reduced pay out for a theft for example, even if it is only the Hi Fi that is taken & you had allowed the full £20,000 for it.

2 As has been said your domestic Hi Fi is normal contents & not Personal Possessions but will not be covered outside you home by most policies. If you do take it, or parts of it, away on holiday etc & require cover, speak to your insurer/broker.

3 New for old cover is known as ‘Reinstatement’ & this term will be in your policy. Very few UK policies are not new for old, ‘Indemnity’, cover. If you do have one I suggest you consider changing it. Good for lower premiums but a disaster if you need to make a substantial claim unless you have thousands of pounds lying around that you don’t know what to do with. With their prices, not a situation many Naim users will find themselves in!

4 Accidental Damage cover costs about 15% more that ‘Specified Perils Only’ cover & is, in my opinion, well worth the extra. You are more likely to damage equipment whilst decorating than lose it in a fire/flood etc.

5 Make sure your policies single item limit (if it has one) is adequate to cover your £20,000+ 500 series. If not, speak to your insurer.

6 Finally, at last I can hear you saying, insurers are very good at paying claims if you are properly insured. This is contrary to popular belief but is never the less true. Whoever is asked to pay a claim for a damaged Hi Fi, the claims handler will be happy to pay out £500/£1,000 with very few questions. Most of them are only human & will not believe an amp costs £20,000 or a cartridge £2/3000. Mind you I have always found it odd they don’t blink over a £20,000 Rolex! Therefore make sure you have all receipts & serial numbers for kit & photos if possible. This will prove you actually owned it & that it will cost what you are claiming to replace it. For the ultra cautious provide the insurer with full details of your system before taking out the policy. They will probably say you don’t need to but I would insist they acknowledge that you have provide details as it makes any future claim dealing easier & quicker & very difficult for them to avoid liability.

Follow these points & you should be as well covered as it is possible to be!

If you have got this far give yourself a big pat on the back!

Hope someone finds this information useful.


Cracking answer, as a person who spent many years in general insurance and ended up as National Accounts Manager for a major group risk insurer , I can endorse every word Canaryfan says .

The price comparison sites work on the assumption that all companies pay out equally, when we were independent , I never had a complaint about our claims service, when we taken over - it was a disaster .

Especially with the excellent hifi we have, you don’t get a Bentley for the price of a Lada.


See, I knew that ACII would eventually pay off!

Sorry everyone, but only Ian2001 will get it…

Not only Ian :thinking:

Yes , but I know the obscene version of what ACII stands for…

I have found Aviva rather inflexible when trying to negotiate lower premiums. I have now gone with NFU. They are rated very well by their customers, a high proportion of whom would use them again and would recommend to others. Unlike other insurers you don’t get a quote online. Instead you actually engage in (a fairly lengthy) conversation with another human being. A rather pleasant change!

It’s kind of funny that anyone’s insurance would be going up since the majority of people have been working at home and staying somewhat sequestered. Burglaries where I live at are down way down and doesn’t seem like the fire department is doing awful lot these days except responding to emergency medical needs. I’ve talked to my insurance company and gotten my auto insurance cut by 60% since my car seldom leaves the driveway. Also with the Advent of the cameras on doorbells and lights and other security devices would certainly seem to reduce thefts. Lastly having a dog who likes to announce visitors tends to reduce crime in my area.

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Does the ACII still exist?

I let my insurance interest wane, I made the mistake of moving from general to life and then life to pensions and then well it all sort of went south (along with my health)

Interesting comment, thank you. I pay Hiscox 400% of my original premium, and only half the cover as I moved buildings to another (way cheaper) provider. But I do believe that in the event of a claim they would step up.

They also seem to cover high value items much more readily than others that require more careful itemisation - are there other providers I wonder that have this same approach?

I hope so.

I spent 12 years trying to get mine. Mainly my own fault. I knew I was clever enough to get it without doing any studying. The exam markers disagreed. Then the first year I buckled down to the studying I managed to get chicken pox at the age of 20 & was really ill for 3 weeks, right when I should have been taking the exams.

Four business promotion in 7 years to different parts of the country followed & made studying a bit tricky at times. During that time the syllabus kept changing so as fast as I was passing parts of it, they were cancelled the following year.

After 12 years I finally got the 9 passes required after actually passing 14 exams! I have often wondered if this is a record?

Still, only one person to blame …

When I retired from full time work 5 years ago, the CII said I could continue to use my ACII & Chartered Broker titles for about £20 per year. I didn’t see the point in my case & declined the offer. I was never able to get my wife to call me Sir in any case.

BTW - I didn’t know there was an alternative meaning of ACII. We are very sheltered here in Cornwall. Do tell, or at least hint to avoid being banned from here!

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I rattled through both the ACII and FCII, but, upon being informed that I was destined for greater things at Head Office, I decided that at 24, that wasn’t for me at all.

I scratched about in the construction industry for a couple of years, just to clear my thoughts, then randomly embarked on a fairly intensive training course to become an offshore diver … talk about a radical career change! :open_mouth:


I presume you meant 40%?

Hiscox specialise in the ‘High Net Worth’ market & they & several other insurers (including most of the big names) offer High Net Worth policies that are often dressed up in fancy names.

These policies offer wider cover that a lot of wealthy people require, & are prepared to pay for, but us paupers don’t & won’t. Common amongst them are very high or no single item limits & all risks cover for anything, anywhere. Very useful when you are transporting your Naim 500 series to your villa in the South of France for the summer.

Of course, the seriously rich will already also have a second 500 system in their villa…

The policies can be good value for the cover they provide & the claims service is often speedier than those with standard policies get. The rich are more impatient than the rest of us!

As an example, a very wealthy client of mine advised that he dropped a shotgun onto concrete & broken the stock. The repair cost was about £5,000. I asked him to forward a repair estimate & notified the insurer the same day of an impending claim. Four hours later I received an email from the insurers that £5,000 had just been transferred to the policyholders account.

See, I told you in my original post that most insurers pay most claims with little fuss!

No I did mean 400%. That is over ten-years however.

It does provide me with peace of mind though, and they have reacted well when needed.

Well, as an insurance salesman some would say I did my fair share of ducking & Diving!

Interesting to see you play the guitar badly. Despite really trying for the past 30 years, I haven’t managed to reach that level yet…

My wife says I was wise to stick with insurance!


I daren’t give the full version or I will be in the naughty boys room for a very long time and may never ever see the light of day again, something like Julian Assange

Another **** in insurance

Best wishes

I think you made the wise decision , I enjoyed large parts of my career but the closer I came to HO politics the more my enthusiasm waned .

In the end my heart wasn’t in it and my health wasn’t either


HO at 24, as the brightest kid on the block, not being taken at all seriously by the already established oldies … or … take on a new challenge, travel the world, meet interesting folks and have alternate months at home with my family … no contest!

Ah, think I have worked it out…

Well, I hope there were a couple of downsides Dave, otherwise I am starting to feel envious of what I missed during those 45 years!

Were you earning 5K a week? Thought not. Neither was I, but I hope you felt a tinge of jealousy for a moment there!

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