We’ve had a request from a journalist asking for stories of people switching general insurance providers (car, home and contents, etc) and saving a lot of money.
My car insurance is due this week, and I’m personally hoping this will happen to me!
Has anyone been lucky enough to save the big bucks, and want to share their story with a journo?
Please let me know.
I switched to Coles insurance from APIA. I had swallowed the tripe about how much cheaper APIA was (may as well have stayed with NRMA) and after four years of hideous increases in premiums, dumped them. I’m a pensioner so I need to pay by the month, and Coles worked out well. At the time I saved something like $25 on the car and $30 or so on the house and contents. Thats per month. Coles insurance seems to be underwritten by IAG so its pretty safe. It may not have the bells and whistles of others, but as a basic insurance it suits this old duck.
Both car and house insurance is much cheaper from Coles or Woolworths than from the major insurers. With my car (insured with Woolworths) I nominate the mileage I expect to travel which is about 9000kms p.a. and that can be increased, if necessary, during the year for a nominal additional cost. I had long resented paying the same as someone who might travel 50000kms p.a.
Although these companies are both sound and I’m sure they would place their policies with reputable companies I sometimes wonder if they would be tougher on claims.
I just switched my home contents insurance on Tuesday as my current insurance who provided the cheapest quote last year, this year was the most expensive, more that $100 more than any other provider ($200 to the cheapest quote)
Seems like everyone is offering a switching discount to me, last year it was 30% this year 25%, this is the 4th insurer I have had in 4 years, this is my only general insurance
My big gripe was how easy it is to sign up online but then impossible to change anything without making a phone call, if I wanted to increase my insured amount (not even possible to get a updated quote as an existing customer) or in this case cancel my renewal I have to call someone
Our Suncorp Home & Contents policy is due today so I once again wasted some time looking at quotes from other insurers.
Suncorp originally quoted us $1,945.77 which was a huge rise on our negotiated price for our previous renewal of $1,648.53.
They had increased the sum insured for the home by 3% and for the contents by 5%, but the premiums for each had increased by almost 20%.
I called them a few days ago, and after leaving the sums insured at the previous amounts, dropping cover for accidental damage which we do not need and have never claimed for, and a little bit of arm twisting, we got the amount down to $1,696.54, only $48.01 more, or less than 3% more than last year.
I tried Coles yesterday and when I pressed the Get Quote button, the application was declined as they do not cover our postcode. Apparently, they only cherry-pick the market.
Today I tried CommInsure, RACQ and APIA for identical coverage.
Can someone remind me how we can get a better deal by changing insurers?
I just noticed that I had missed the “change the excess” section on the RACQ and APIA websites so I updated them both to match the Suncorp and CommInsure quotes.
Still a complete ripoff.
Maybe Choice needs to move into the general insurance market in a similar way they did with Electricity via Choice Transformer. Give Choice your renewal notice and details and see what they can arrange for a yearly fee?? Transformer is $99 a year but they will only switch you if you save over that $99 and to do the comparison is free. Is this worth looking at @BrendanMays @PatrickVeyret?
I’m sure there’s been some watercooler discussions on this in the past. I’ll be sure to mention it to our New Things team
I thought I’d written a post on this topic near my beginnings on this community. Can’t find it.
Feeling my billed renewal had escalated too much, I started out just re-quoting with my existing Home Contents supplier at the time (AAMI) to find an instant reduction of ~15% from memory. I live in a unit amongst several identical units all with individual street addresses, so I just tried re-submitting the same quote submission with the different street numbers. The units are virtually identical, with some variation in external land. The neighbour on one side was 20% more expensive, and the other side 30% lower cost. The one around the corner (different street) and arguably the most valuable was also about 30% less.
Called AAMI. I wonder what address information they hold per address that makes the same contents value cost more or less for insurance. I was reasonably certain none of the neighbours had claimed within previous 5 or more years.
The call centre agent basically couldn’t do anything not in front of them. I could get the 15% discount by cancelling the old policy & starting a new one.
This now very grumpy customer didn’t do that, he went elsewhere for the ~30% type pricing.
We had the options of taking up RACQ or Suncorp a year past. Due for renewal soon. We did look at others but were left even more uncertain as to the extent of the policies. There were significant differences for the same values.
One trap in comparison shopping is to ensure the quotes are for equal cover, no claim bonus, exclusions and excess. It’s impossible to do this without a full written quote, something the on phone reps seemed keen to avoid without closing out the deal.
I tried both on three special risks related to out property which is rural but not used for agriculture despite size. Neither had complete answers and specialist rural insurers will only insure active farming business. We went with the lower quote, but I suspect that the insurers prefer to cherry pick what they will cover. You may get a good quote, but not the cover you need.
The answer we received was - “if it’s not excluded - it’s included” seemed rather poor in response for risks that are not specified in the policy that may be significant but not common to a typical residential policy.
A suggestion for anyone with a larger block and a ride on mower concerns cover when mowing the footpath or verge. You need to be acting legally when doing so and be confident the activity does not need to be specifically mentioned in the policy?
A few years ago I had three policies with SGIO; when one came up for renewal I decided to shop around. If I got a quote as a new customer the price quoted was substantially less than the renewal price. When I rang the company I was told they couldn’t change the renewal quote. I warned them that if they didn’t change the renewal quote I would cancel the policy. This happened with all three policies. They would rather lose a customer of eight years rather than reduce the renewal price.
Every year when any of my insurances are due, I do a comparison website search, ask a broker for comparison search by just sending them my current policy so takes me two seconds as they have access to some insurance companies that only go through brokers and a quick search of the top insurance companies. As I live in a cyclone area, I only have my home and contents insurance with provides that actually say “cyclone” in the policy. Its all meant to be covered under storm, but i don’t take the risk. No word “cyclone”, no policy for me. It does reduce the providers I can use down quiet a bit. I’m not sure if this is allowed, but most of the time i get a new price from my current provider via an online quote and its normally cheaper then my policy renewal, not sure if it thinks I’m a new customer and it also mentions $100 off for buying online which should be the same as with my current policy as all i’m going to do is pay it online. Anyway, by doing this I save hundreds each year. Also, this same provide once had a glitch just as I was doing a car renewal and gave me a ridiculous low price they said was an error but honoured. I’ve also notice their prices go up and down each day for exact same policy.
As for my health insurance, I use to change every year. Get a reduced price or a $100 gift voucher or something. Once a provide had an ended promotion gym membership still advertised on their email signature block that I quizzed and they honoured. My work has reduced prices with some providers, it takes some time but each year i check out whats on offer. The provider I am currently using i think are small and newish and when I switched, I saved hundreds and no one has come close to their price each year since.
I have changed insurers. I was with NRMA for a while and told NRMA if its next premiums increases above cost of living rates then I would go elsewhere. And I did.
NRMA came in about the middle of the pack in terms of handling claims when CHOICE looked at insurers and I didn’t think the higher premium was justified given NRMA’s ranking. How insurance companies handle claims is probably more important than what is in the policy.
I did ask what was the value of my no claim bonus (at the maximum) and NRMA would not or could not tell me. I figured that the difference between the lower premium of my new insurer and the loss of NRMA’s no claim discount meant that I still came out ahead.