Home insurance: check your provider isn't hiding the best deal

HousesWhen it comes to renewing insurance, don't assume your existing insurer will offer you the best deal up front.

I recently renewed my home insurance and although my existing provider had the best deal ready and waiting, it didn't tell me so.
Instead, my Halifax renewal letter told me that because I was a good customer with no claims to speak of I would be rewarded with a rise in premiums. Nothing unusual there I suppose, this is insurance we're talking about.

But once I compared deals online I discovered that I could save £80 if I switched to . . . erm, Halifax. So funnily enough I decided to go with the online deal I found rather than what they posted out to me.

As I said, it's common for insurers to quote worse premiums at renewal than you could get elsewhere. It's not just home insurance either but car insurance and travel insurance too. But I was surprised, after gearing up to switch, to find that my insurer could not only offer better but the most competitive quote.

Insurers like busy or lazy households
Bizarre as it may sound your existing insurer won't always offer the most competitive deal (not until pushed anyway) and most of the time it would prefer to bank on your apathy.

Companies rely on you being too busy to care and hope that when you see a quote that's not too horrendous, you'll just think 'oh what the heck, let's just pay and be done with it.'
We're probably all guilty of having done that at some stage with our money; whether it's buying insurance or haggling for a taxi on holiday.

The best approach
Whenever you renew your insurance, the best approach is always to shop around and see what is the best deal on the market right now. Then phone your existing insurer and ask if it's willing to match the table-topping deal you've found. You'll often find that your existing insurer will then say 'yes' and match the best deal.

The unsual aspect of my story was that the table-topping deal was actually offered by my existing insurer! That just highlights how ridiculous the whole process is.

Compare don't compromise
You can easily compare home insurance deals with lovemoney and it probably doesn't take as long as you think. The process will be faster if you have some details to hand like the kind of locks you have on your doors and when your house was built (standard questions when getting an insurance quote).

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