A cheap insurance policy may not provide all of the cover that you need. It is important to check the "exclusions" in a policy to make sure nothing has been left out that you require.

If you have decided that you want to buy insurance it is advisable to “shop around”.

Start by getting a few quotes from different companies. Insurance companies must provide you with key policy information when giving you a quote – this information can be a really useful checklist when comparing other company’s policies. 

Remember, though a policy may be cheaper, it may not provide all of the cover that you need. Also, it is important to bear in mind to always check for exclusions, and always check for charges and fees that may come with the policy.

There are a number of ways of buying insurance.

You can buy insurance based upon information only (without advice) or after receiving advice (with advice).

Buying without advice

Buying without advice puts the responsibility on you to do your research thoroughly – it is for you to decide whether or not the policy is suitable for you.

If you are using a price comparison website, be aware that many large companies are not included, and that many policies may not provide as much cover as you need in an effort to give you the cheapest price and a quick service.

Follow this link for more advice on buying using comparison websites. 

Always be wary when using price comparison sites as they do not always have your best interests at heart.

Buying with advice

You can also to go to an insurance broker who will look at your personal situation and find a policy that suits you. This is called buying with advice, and if the advice turns out to be inappropriate you have the right to complain, and in some cases claim compensation, see this link.

If you are unsure of how to  proceed it is advisable to use an insurance broker. They are experts in the market and can often find you a better deal as well as helping you with any claims you may have to make. They receive commission from the insurance provider so you should not have to pay any additional fees on top of the premium.although under certain circumstances you might have to pay a commission charge. For advice on using an Insurance Broker go to this link.

A guide - When to use an insurance broker is available from MoneyHelper.

To help you choose a Insurance Broker click here

Almost all firms offering financial services in the UK must be authorised by The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) .

You should only deal with a financial services firm that is authorised.

If you deal with an authorised firm you will be covered by the Financial Ombudsman Service or the Financial Services Compensation Scheme if things go wrong.

You can check whether a firm is authorised by searching the FCA authorised register.

Unfortunately there are firms that operate without authorisation and some knowingly run scams like share fraud and other investment scams. If you are unsure check the FCA List of unauthorised companies.

To acces a 10 step guide to make sure you are dealing with an authorised firm, and to protect yourself from fraud and unauthorised activity click here,

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