As Christmas draws ever nearer and I am still trying decide what gifts to buy my loved-ones (note to self – have probably missed Amazon’s delivery cut off date) I am faced with a bigger quandary at this time of year…and unfortunately it’s not of the “how-is-santa-going-to-deliver-my-presents-when-I-don’t-have-a-chimney” quandary.
Nope. My dilemma is very seasonal for this time of year – it is: Can you ever claim too many times on your buildings insurance?
Making an insurance claim, in theory, should be pretty straight forward – I pay my insurance premiums and I am covered for the damage that has occurred. (I won’t bore you with the latest fiasco, this is the season to be jolly and hang tinsel on the tree). However, I feel I’m now on the cusp of being every insurance man’s nightmare – because “I-am-the-customer-who-always-claims-insurance”. And the fact is, insurance companies make their money from the “customers-who-never-claim-insurance”
So I didn’t mean to become the “customer-who-always-claims-insurance” it’s just I’ve had a run of bad luck in the last couple of years and tenants being the darlings that they are, have ensured that my properties have remained problem-free-only-in-my-dreams…
And so I spoke with my broker about what to do, and my concerns with being “the-customer-who-always-claims-insurance” and whether any company in their right mind would ever insure me again and he informed me it’s not about the amount of the claim that is the issue, but the frequency. Which quelled one concern, as the claim would be for several thousands of pounds. But, it opened another concern, because unfortunately, not only am I “the-customer-who-always-claims-insurance” I am, in fact, a regular. I am a frequent flyer. I am “the-customer-who-regularly-claims-insurance”
I never wanted to be this person. I never wanted the loyalty card, bonus points and free desk top calendars that come with having my insurance broker’s telephone number on speed dial – I just somehow seem to have drifted into this territory.
And so my dilemma is – what is the probability if I claim again on my insurance, what is the likelihood that an insurance company will insure me again? And if I find one that does, just what sort of mark up on the premiums am I going to have to end up paying? (bearing in mind I’ve already seen a 30% increase in the last 2 years due to my insurance incidents). And what choice am I actually going to have? Because the fact is, insurance companies insure those people who think something “may happen”, but it doesn’t. Insurance companies are not overly keen on people like me where something is “probably going to happen”.
So what to do? I have a valid claim. But will the short term gain of claiming on the insurance for the damage be a long term pain?
Decisions. Decisions. Oh I would much rather be wondering what sort of mince pies to bake 🙁