Don’t let insurers rip you off in 2023 as premiums rise – be prepared to challenge or switch their rateThe new year will herald a flood of renewal notifications for insurance renewalsBut look around and watch for higher premiums this year By Jeff Prestridge for The Mail on Sunday Published: 5:03 PM EST, December 31, 2022 | Updated: 5:09 PM EST, December 31, 2022
The new year will herald a spate of renewal notices for auto, home and travel insurance policies. Everything indicates that they will lead to inflation-busting premium increases. For example, the cost of car insurance is increasing by an average of 14 percent (source: Comparethemarket), with the over-50s being hit the hardest. Although the regulator has tried to prevent insurance companies from punishing loyal policyholders with higher premiums than new customers pay, that does not mean that anyone who receives an extension notice in the next few weeks will have to accept it without complaint. Vigilance is the order of the day. Renewal Time: The new year will herald a spate of renewal notifications for auto, home and travel insurance. Mail on Sunday reader Martyn Hunter, from Waterloo-ville in Hampshire, has been a More Than home insurance customer for many years, during which he has occasionally managed to get his renewal premium reduced by calling and threatening to leave. This year, his insurance, which would have been renewed in three days, was expected to increase by 30 percent. But as soon as he got the renewal notice (just before Christmas), he called More Than. By agreeing to some minor changes to his coverage – and benefiting from a discretionary rebate for loyal customers – he drove the cost below what he paid 12 months ago. “I’m retired,” says Martyn, “so every penny I can save is vital. Anyone faced with a premium increase like this that I’ve been asked to do – especially older people – should challenge their insurer.” Martyn is absolutely right – although it still makes good sense to do some research. My lovely cleaner Ingrid, a source of solid personal finance knowledge, got her annual travel protection by shopping at a lower rate. This is because their provider (Cover For You) wanted to more than double the premium (from £69.34 to £177). Despite being a die-hard traveler (Ingrid enjoys her cruises and often visits her son in Spain), she doesn’t know why Cover For You wanted her to pay a ‘special price’ of £177. Old? Maybe (she’s in her late 60s). But she’s happy the Post has offered her “better” coverage for just £64 a year. So remember: loyalty still doesn’t pay. I’m sure insurers are using the guise of double-digit inflation to push through unjustified premium hikes. Like Martyn, stand by your side — and if necessary, Ingrid and look around. A new role in 2023… After more than 25 years as Personal Finance Editor of The Mail on Sunday, my role at the newspaper is changing a bit. Hopefully this means a little more writing (so please keep emailing) and a lot less editing. The result is that I will become Group Wealth & Personal Finance Editor, working alongside my talented Personal Finance colleagues at both the Daily Mail and MoS. To all readers, you are my eyes and ears. Keep in touch. happy happy new year jeff.prestridge@mailonsunday. co.uk
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