Tips to save on insurance costs

First, it was the car insurance bill. I rang the insurer and in my nicest voice pondered whether there were any discounts that could be applied given I had never asked before – because I worked full time and that task never made it high enough on my to-do list.

I had a nice chat with the person on the end of the phone. She asked a series of questions, including how many kilometres the car was doing on average per year. This elicited the information that my husband was now self-employed and no longer drove to the city every day. Lo and behold, I saved about $100 on the bill with no loss of entitlements.

Not bad for a friendly 10-minute chat.

So earlier this month, the house and contents insurance bill arrived – hard on the heels of the gas, electricity, water and phone bills. Every year I mean to get this bill sent mid-year to ease the pain just before Christmas.

Again, I called the insurer and asked in my friendliest tone: “Is there any way to get this total down a bit?”

Lovely Emily replied: “The house is replacement value, but the value of the contents is increased every year in line with CPI – you may want to look at that.”

Me: “$150,000 – yes please reduce that. Three kids have moved out over the past five years and we have a lot less contents.”

Emily: “And your excess is $100 – you may want to increase that.”

Me: “Yes, please, $300 sounds good.”

The conversation continued until I had wiped $200 off the bill.

My advice to you?

  • Shop around to make sure your insurer is still the best option. There are some great websites so you can do this easily.
  • Always call your insurers. If your circumstances have changed, discuss whether that has any positive effect on your bills without having a negative effect on your cover.
  • Tailor your insurance according to what you need.
  • Check the policy details so you know exactly what is covered – and what’s not.

Do you have any tips on how to get the best value from your insurance bills?

Related articles:
Car insurance rip-offs
Tips for financial health
Managing health cover

All content on the YourLifeChoices’ website is of a general nature and has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. It has been prepared with due care, but no guarantees are provided for ongoing accuracy or relevance. Before making a decision based on this information, you should consider its appropriateness with regard to your circumstances. You should seek professional advice from a financial planner, lawyer or tax agent in relation to any aspects that affect your financial and legal circumstances. Financial comments provided by readers cannot be relied on as professional advice, but as general comments only.

Written by Janelle Ward

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