Has the cost of your home insurance been bumped up by sneaky fees? We’ve been investigating…
Paying out for home insurance is rarely an enjoyable experience. But, for those of you who enjoy peace of mind, like me, home insurance is a necessity.
When it comes round to comparing home insurance quotes you’d expect to pay the quoted premium price.
But what other sneaky fees and charges are lurking beneath?
The devil is in the detail
In our investigations we took a look at the different types of admin fees applied by 36 of the biggest home insurers. What we found was a very varied picture, which could leave you shelling out more money on policies that could have been cheaper elsewhere.
Admin fees are whacked on top for paying by credit card, cancelling your policy after (and within!) fourteen days, making adjustments to your policy (such as change of address) and getting a copy of a document.
Half of them charge adjustment fees, such as changing your address, with costs ranging from £8.48 to £25. And six charge between £5 and £20 for duplicate documents.
Five of the insurers (Bradford & Bingley, Endsleigh, Nationwide, the Post Office and Prudential) who had extra charges didn’t show them until after we had got a quote.
We also found that Admiral detailed their fees in a section on their website called ‘legal info’ which was four clicks away from the home page – not the most logical place to look for fees and charges.
On the other hand there was good practice demonstrated by Budget Insurance, Esure, LV and Sheila’s Wheels who clearly labelled the pages showing their fees.
Shedding light on the issue
As part of our Sneaky Fees and Charges campaign we’ve been asking for financial fees and charges to be made upfront, fair and easy to compare.
We’re asking insurance companies to: stop hiding the full cost from customers; stop making it harder to compare prices; and stop stinging customers with rip-off added charges. We also want the regulator to consider whether these fees are really justified at all.
Have you ever had to pay out unexpectedly for admin fees and charges on your insurance?