How do I get a better deal on insurance?

Shop around – The insurance industry is very competitive and new products are released all of the time. There are many insurance companies that provide online insurance quotes so it can be worth checking to see if your policy remains competitive over time. When reviewing your policy don’t just focus on the headline premium cost, also note the excess as well as what the insurance covers (or more importantly doesn’t). Two policies may have the same premium however one may exclude some key risks that are relevant to you. You can use comparison websites such as Canstar:

Multi-policy discounts – some insurance companies offer discounts if you and/or your family have multiple policies with them. For example if you had home contents and car insurance with the same company a discount may apply. Generally the discounts range from 5% – 15%.

No Claim Bonuses– Some insurance, such as car insurance will become cheaper if you do not make any claims. Ask your insurer if you qualify for this bonus if you have a clean claims history.

Lower your risk – Many insurers will offer a cheaper premium if you take steps to lower your risk. For example if you are a smoker and you quit smoking you may be offered a lower premium on health insurance and personal insurance. On a home contents policy you could reduce your premium by fitting locks on all your doors and windows and installing a security alarm.

Ensure you have the right level of coverage – Take the time to assess how much insurance to take out. With things like home contents insurance it is easy to leave out items or under estimate how the value of lots of little things can add up leading to underinsurance. Equally, it can be tempting to opt for the most comprehensive insurance policy available however you may then be paying for cover that you do not need. [be like Goldilocks]

Consider your excess – Many insurance policies allow you to choose where to set the excess. Generally the higher the excess the lower the premium. If you have some emergency funds to cover small setbacks you may consider opting for a higher excess to lower your ongoing premiums

Check the fine print – Review your policy document and the Product Disclosure Document to ensure you understand what is and is not included in your insurance policy rather than making assumptions. You may be surprised learn that some of the key risks that you are looking to protect yourself from are not included. For example some home building insurance will exclude damage from floods.

Level vs Stepped Premiums – Most relevant for personal insurance such as life insurance or income protection insurance. Many of these products allow you to choose between level premiums or stepped premiums. Stepped premiums start our cheaper however will increase each year (as the likelihood of claiming on this insurance increases each year) whereas level premiums will be more expensive to begin with however will increase at a lower rate over time. If you are likely to require insurance in the long run you could consider level premiums