UK Insurance guide - Everything you need to know
According to statistic, in 2021 there were more than 400 nsurance companies in the UK alone. Fast-forward to 2022, the numbers are only expected to grow. It may be difficult to wrap your head around the concept of insurance if you’re new to it. Thus, to put it in simpler words, insurance acts as a backup plan in case a financial catastrophe befalls you.
How Does Insurance Work in the UK?
There are two parties in an insurance agreement, i.e. the insurer (insurance company) and the insurer (an individual). The individual pays a fixed premium to the insurance company in return for covering the losses in case of a disaster. This is also the reason most people who apply for insurance hope that they would never have to claim its benefits, especially in the case of life insurance.
Finding the Right Insurance Quotes and Policies
Insurance is a broad term and a variety of different policies come under it. For instance, getting health insurance doesn’t mean all your medical bills will be covered by the insurer. The compensation from insurance companies is based on your insurance coverage.
Following are some tips to help you find the right insurance quotes and policies:
1. Figure out your needs;
2. Review multiple plan options;
3. Communicate your requirements clearly;
4. Compare the monthly/yearly costs of each plan;
5. Evaluate if the policy covers what you’re looking for;
6. Keep your options open;
7. Understand that cheaper isn’t always better.
How to Apply for an Insurance
Once you’ve reviewed the insurance policy and feel satisfied with it, depending on the company, there are usually a couple of ways to get the coverage:
- Apply online
- Apply in person
- Apply via phone
- Apply by email
Regardless of the method you choose, keep in mind to verify the authenticity of the insurance company before proceeding with any financial transactions.
When and How to File an Insurance Claim
Knowing when to claim insurance depends on its type. To give a reference, if an intoxicated driver breaks the red light and smashes into your car, then that unarguably is a good time to call your insurance company.
Each company has its own policies regarding insurance claims and it also depends on your coverage. Therefore, it’s always best to have the customer service number of your insurance company in your contact list. If you’re trying to make claims to get compensated for an accident, take notes of conversation you have with the culprit right after the accident and capture photographs of your car at the scene as that may act as an evidence to further solidify your claim.
Even if you think you’re at fault, do not let that stop you from calling the agent. They are going to provide further guidance and notify you of all the necessary documentation required for the proceedings.
Why Insurance Reviews are Important
A couple of decades ago, the only option people had to find a reliable insurance provider was either through personal referrals or experience. However, with the mainstream use of the internet, the dynamics are a bit different. People trust online review websites and modern search engines more than ever as they make a huge impact in helping you make an informed decision.
Although keep in mind that while searching for reviews, only trust a reputable website as they have a stricter moderation process to shuffle out the fake reviews. Note that if you’re seeing a large number of good insurance company reviews with similar wording popping up in a short span of time, then that may be a red flag.
Additional Tips to Search Trustable Insurance Companies
Similar to other industries, there are also fraudulent activities conducted by many insurance carriers. Although it’s the legal duty of insurance companies to cover the losses of their clients, some insurers might try to nullify or delay payments for valid claims through cunning tactics. Hence, to make your investment worthwhile, it’s recommended that you spend some extra time researching trustable insurance providers.
Here are a couple of tips you can follow to make your search faster and easier:
1) Referrals and Recommendations
If you know anyone in your family or friends with insurance coverage, then do not forget to ask them. While online recommendations can often be manipulated, such is not the case for the people you know. As your friends do not work for the insurance company, they will share an unbiased review to help you decide if it’s worth trusting the insurance company.
2) Don’t Solely Focus only on the Price
As tempting as it may be to go for the cheapest insurance policy, it’s not recommended. Understand that cheaper doesn’t always mean better and in most cases, you may run into a fraud. Otherwise, even if the company is legit, they might cut costs somewhere else like by offering a sloppy customer care service or delaying payments. If you have to pay a bit extra, but in return, you can get coverage from a trustable insurance provider then that may be a better investment.
3) Conduct License Verification
Coming from our previous point, if you dig up on the internet then you may come to know that the lowest priced insurance policy providers may not be licensed either. Therefore, if you’re dealing with a new insurance company, keep in mind to ask them to show their license or search about them yourself online.
When to Consider Purchasing an Insurance?
You can find an insurance plan for just about any problem. However, that doesn’t mean you should purchase all of them. Applying for insurance heavily depends on your personal needs and requirements. For instance, if you often find yourself dealing with health issues, then opting for health insurance might be a great way for you to mitigate the financial burden.
However, this does not in any way mean that you shouldn’t get health insurance if you’re a perfectly healthy individual. After all, the point of insurance is to prepare for the unthinkable.
Similarly, other coverages like auto insurance are only necessary when you own a car. So make sure that before you invest your money on an insurance plan, you first carefully evaluate whether you even need it or not.
The Most Common Types of Insurance
Insurance helps us prepare for the unforeseen and finding the right one depends on a plethora of factors. However, here are some of the most common types of insurance that may be useful in your day to day life:
1) Health Insurance
Healthcare facilities charge a hefty amount of money nowadays and just one serious illness may put you at the brink of bankruptcy. This is why health insurance is one of the best investments you could make for yourself and your loved ones. Health insurance covers surgical and prescription drugs expenses. Some health insurances also cover dental work, and even if they don’t, direct dental insurance is always an option.
2) Travel Insurance
Travel insurance normally offers short-term coverage and provides financial safety to travellers. Depending on your insurer, your travel insurance may cover trip cancellation, loss of baggage, or other unforeseen circumstances.
3) House Insurance
Fire outbreaks, storms, earthquakes, there are endless possibilities that may potentially put your property at risk. House insurance helps you cover the financial liability that you may incur due to damage to your home. Although keep in mind that the coverage may depend on the premium paid by the insuree. Moreover, for tenants, it’s also worth checking out renters insurance.
4) Car Insurance
Road accidents have become far too common nowadays. Someone else’s reckless driving may lead to you paying thousands of dollars on car repairs. This is why applying for a car insurance plan is one of the soundest decisions you can make in today’s world. Read more about car insurance if you want to know more. .
5) Pet Insurance
Pets are like family members to most people. However, just like humans, animals are also at risk of serious medical conditions and not everyone can afford to pay sky-rocketing veterinarian bills. This is where pet insurance may save you as it often covers the cost of unexpected accidents, infections and surgical procedures.
Aside from the domestic and general insurance types we’ve discussed, you can also apply for specific insurances that target particular things. To give some perspective, if you’re applying for specific property insurance then only a certain location may be covered for a named risk like flood, theft, fire or more. It’s also worth noting that specific insurance is also often cheaper than domestic and general insurance plans.
Even if you do not have to make insurance claims in your lifetime, coverage can still offer you the peace of mind that you require by preparing you for the worst. Moreover, modern insurance companies also enable you to conveniently apply for the coverage whether in person or through online mediums. Similarly, if you felt sceptical about getting insured due to becoming a victim of frauds then with the help of online reviews, referrals and a bit of research, that too can easily be avoided.
So we hope you now know everything that is needed to make an informed decision for finding the right insurance coverage.