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My car (driver door) was bumped about as gently as possible to make a bend in it. I did not know I was hit except for the at-fault vehicle appearing in my window,

The claim was made through the at-fault driver’s RACV policy. RACV sold using their preferred panel beater pretty hard. It was two weeks waiting for assessment, then 2 months in the queue, then delayed another 3 weeks because the door (it had to be replaced because the crash barrier inside was compromised) had to come from Europe, and then 3 weeks in the shop, including 1 week for them to work out the power window (they finally gave up and took it to a dealer.)

When I picked it up there was an obvious loud wind noise from that window; straight back and the writer agreed it wasn’t right. So much for any pretence of QA. The window seal trim was not installed properly and after to and fro I had to work out what was wrong and show them. All seemed OK but weeks later I noticed the trim improperly repositions making a gap between trim parts with the window up. The shop takes the position it could be normal wear and tear (BS!) and considering the troubles getting the window to operate properly, and to seal the wind noise, did I really want them to take anything apart again. Classic!

The strategy seems to appear helpful while essentially stonewalling unless pushed hard. After the to and fro I have little confidence they know how to or could/would correct it, so as of today I am letting them win as it is a relatively small cosmetic issue and the wear and tear on myself going through the motions with them has been wearing.

I could push RACV who provide a lifetime guarantee on repairs, but apparently no guarantee repairs will ever be done correctly, however they will (go through the motions of) try and try and try…


We insure with GIO and have been with them for many years. We’ve had a few claims and every one was met without too much discussion. Once I even saved them money on a hail-damaged roof. We probably pay more than we would to some of the other insurers but trust is a big factor and, over 11 years, we have got to trust GIO. Occasionally, I have gone back to them to check if premiums can be reduced a bit and they have generally been cooperative in discussions and sometimes in lowering the premiums.


A CHOICE shadow shop found huge price differences between home insurance policies. The biggest difference was nearly $1700 for the same property!


Each year or two when I do a routine comparative check on my policy I find widely varying prices as well as widely varying T&C on what and how they cover things and process claims. I find comments about the low as well as high hoops some companies put their customers through for a claim. What premium value does one put on their house and contents (eg burning) and the insurer demanding documentary proof of what was in it and when it was purchased prior to any payout, as compared to another that accepts photos or a stat dec?

Our house does not fit the standard definition used by most to ascertain what “value” should be in the house, yielding quoting hassles; I have been knocked back from internet quotes because their formulas for a ratio of building (rooms, etc) to contents, and we are well out of the norm on the high side for contents by those standardised models. Ringing them to discuss has not been any more rewarding; those I contacted over the years see anything outside the norm as a high profit making opportunity.

It has to go without saying while cost is important, it is not just all about cost.


The GIO stood fairly firm until it went public.

split this topic #27

A post was split to a new topic: Making a small claim - RACV Insurance woes


We’ve recently updated our home and contents review (member content) and home insurance buying guide. Please feel free to keep sharing your insurance stories :house_with_garden:


Eighteen months ago I put in a claim with AAMI for leaking water damage to the footing of my 48 year old house that has created some large cracks in my walls. This accident happened in January 2016 and gradually over the following 2 years the cracks gradually became wider to beyond the 5mm and one is now about 25mm.

The AAMI employed engineers claimed long term differential foundation movement that has been occurring for an extended period of time and of course this is not covered by the policy. My engineer found that the insurers engineers were “unprofessional” and totally wrong with their measurements and assessments.

To cut a long story short Suncorp took over the claim from their affiliate and also supported the insurers engineers. I have had two determinations from the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) that also supported the AAMI engineers but awarded me 30% of the costs to the repair. I rejected the offer and from advice of a lawyer I am currently getting my documents ready to go through another process.

It is absolutely clear what they are doing according to my engineer and the lawyer, not to mention the conflict of interest between AFCA who failed to consider the many issues we have proven and the fact that one of their major funders is Suncorp is glaringly obvious.


It is troubling to hear that you are having difficulties resolving the claim. I hope that the insurer will cover your legal expenses should you be successful.

Also let the forum know how things progress and the ultimate outcome.


Hi phb, yes I will. Just in case the insurer reads this forum I will not yet give anything away yet. I am amazed that the law sets up a conflict of interest for the insured between the AFCA (not AFSP a typo in the earlier email) and an insurer. I have since discovered the engineer had also been an employee for Suncorp over many years, therefore this also could include a backscratching arrangement at the detriment of the insured.


It will be no surprise to most readers that insurers tend to jack up premiums each year, creating a kind of loyalty tax for those who don’t take the time to shop around. However, there is some good news with previous premium information added to your renewal notice, as indicated in this op-ed from former ACCC chairman Allan Fels.

As a side note, if you’re in the Sydney area and have experienced a large premium increase year on year, please get in touch.


Most certainly not before time.



This was also reported in “The Conversation” and Alan Fels felt that up to 3.6 Billion dollars nationally could be saved by renewers of policies doing some research before just accepting a policy renewal.


Brendan have just this week had 2 conversations (2 Renewals due around this time) with AAMI about their 17.1% Increase in premium & 12.2% decrease in insured value. They gave me all the “reasons” you could possibly think of, none of which were valid. They did reduce the price on both policies after I told them to cancel both. Absolutely ridiculous but they do have us all by the proverbial.


Shocking! While it shouldn’t have to be the way, I’m glad you stuck to your guns for the price reduction.


This illustrates one very sneaky practice.

Comprehensive insurance for a new vehicle may appear to offer value.

As vehicles get older the agreed value or replacement market value decreases (mostly). Invariably the premiums should reflect this change and show some reduction. It rarely does unless you contact the insurer directly and negotiate.

It would be useful to see the insurance quotes split into three components. The portion of the renewal cost to protect the owners vehicle, the portion of the cost for third party property damage, and ideally a discount for combining the two. It’s what I now ask for over the phone when considering quotes and the applicable excess.

There is a point in vehicle age, value, where given the benefits of reduced premiums for a higher excess it may be better to only have third party property and put the savings towards a new vehicle. To make that decision requires the consumer is better informed.

It’s a rort.

Should you need to ask every time?

We switched insurers and policies two years ago dumping RACQ for both vehicles and saved more than $600 on the combined premium, for the same excess. ‘IT PAYS - Not to belong’! Might also suit the advert line.


One claim I have heard from insurers is that as vehicles become older, the parts become more expensive.

And would they lie to you?


One aspect that is not straight forward dollars is that as vehicles ages, vehicle dependent, they can actually cost more to repair than a recent model because there may no longer be spares held domestically, and in some cases there might not be a ready supply of used parts on our shores either.

If you have a 10 year old vehicle with a $6,000 agreed value anything beyond the most basic prang can quickly become a write off. Without comprehensive you would be $6,000 (of value) out of pocket but with comprehensive only the amount of the premium and excess, maybe $1,600 out of pocket but you would have had to have 3rd party anyway, so make that $1,200 out of pocket.

If you had the policy for the entire 10 years you may have paid maybe $5,000 above just having 3rd party, but most of us can manage that over a decade than we can manage one big $ hit if it happens.

If the vehicle value is only $3,000 the point is made why would you?