We recently put together a cost comparison between some of the leading banks insurance offerings and uncovered a simply staggering price difference.
Homeowners could be in for a pleasant surprise if they shop around. For example, a terraced property in Louth would see a customer paying almost three times more for home insurance through Ulster Bank than if they went through a broker. Many homeowners allow banks to arrange their insurance in conjunction with mortgages and then allow the cover roll over year-on-year with the same provider.
But insuremyhouse.ie is warning of expensive pricing structures and urging customers to shop around to avoid being stung. Managing Director Jonathan Hehir said: “Our analysis found on a sample €250,000 terraced property in Louth, a customer would be paying almost three times more for home insurance through Ulster Bank (€447) than if they went through a broker (€157). This is a difference of €290 or 184 per cent.” He added: “Insurance for a €300,000 detached property in Tallaght came in at €503 with Bank of Ireland and €324 with a broker (€324) — a difference of a massive €264. There’s no doubt that banks are charging a premium for this product.”
Jonathan went on to add; “I believe the reason for this is simply home insurance is just one of the many products and services banks offer and because it’s not their core business, they don’t focus the same attention on getting the best value for customers”.
The cost analysis looked at five standard sample customers and contrasted the premiums from a typical online broker and the five main banks. Jonathan urged customers not to rest on their laurels and said: “Home insurance is far more stable than motor insurance at the moment and it represents good value for money for homeowners. However, that is not a reason for customers to rest on their laurels and simply let insurance premiums roll over when it comes to renewal time. These sample costings demonstrate the huge price differentials that exist in the market. We’re making it a priority to make people aware of this and to save people money highlighting the benefits of shopping around.”
Here’s how to lower the cost of your premiums further
- Secure your home: Most insurers will offer significant discounts for homeowners who have up to date alarm systems or even monitored alarms. If you do have a monitored alarm or if you’ve just recently gotten one installed make sure you notify your home insurance provider as you may be entitled to a significant discount. These systems may have been expensive a few years ago but the prices have significantly decreased.
- Check policy “add-ons”: Your policy may have certain extras that you don’t particularly need or want. There’s also a little point in specifying valuable items such as iPads and bicycles if you opted for a higher excess of €500 for example.
- Increasing the excesses on your policy: This will invariably reduce the cost of your premium. However, you need to ensure you don’t end up having to pay out a fortune in the event of a claim. We would advise you always take expert advice when considering changing policy excess.
“Admittedly doing it yourself does take time, and it might not be the most enjoyable job to undertake, but by taking control of the process and by getting a number of quotes, you can save hundreds on your home insurance. Alternatively, you could ask a broker to do it for you. Surely, savings of that size are worth just a little bit of effort.”
The following quotes are based on a home that is 59 years old, standard construction and claims free:
Source: The Irish Sun
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