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Car insurance: a scam, or a scam?

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Car insurance: a scam, or a scam?

Old 16th May 2018, 17:23
  #1 (permalink)  
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Surrey
Posts: 155
Car insurance: a scam, or a scam?

Rec’d a renewal notice through the post for a policy with Lloyd’s Bank. “Quite a lot”, I thought, so I turned to one of the price comparison websites (the one with the meerkats). Inputting the same details which I got from the renewal notice, the lowest quote was a whopping 37% LESS than that which I had been offered. It was also with Lloyd’s Bank...”how come?”, I thought. So I phoned the number given......

Turns out that the insurance scheme is actually administered by ‘Company A’, and Lloyd’s seem to have nothing to do with it (apart from charging for use of their name, no doubt). After listening to the endless BS that they announce these days, I actually spoke to a human. It seems that as an existing customer, which I had neglected to tell the meerkats, I should not have got the lowest offer. The “new business” person would not speak to me as I was an existing customer, the ‘existing customer’ person would not speak to me as it was new business. I asked the direct question of ‘why the difference’, but they declined to answer that and merely gave me the option of not renewing the policy when it became due. In high dudgeon I told them I wouldn’t renew if they were the last insurer on earth, and arranged cover with the second-place insurer from the meerkat’s list - it’s only a couple of quid more than the lowest.

It’s Bank of Scotland.
The insurance scheme is administered by ‘Company A’. BofS seem to have nothing to do with it, etc.

I smell a rodent. A great big furry one.
gruntie is offline  
Old 16th May 2018, 17:28
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Join Date: Sep 2006
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Unfortunately common practice among pretty much all insurers, including home, car and breakdown recovery.
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Old 16th May 2018, 17:36
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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: West Wiltshire, UK
Age: 66
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Yes, not only very common practice, but I've found that I've always got a better deal on everything from insurance to energy by completely ignoring the price comparison websites. For house insurance I found a small local broker, who consistently beats any price on any price comparison website, and gives the reassurance of a "big name" underwriter.

For energy supplier decisions I've not found an easy way of making comparisons that avoid the mark-up from the price comparison web sites. Last time I knocked up a spreadsheet and downloaded the actual tariff data (standing charge and unit price) for a handful of suppliers, which took time, but interestingly I did get a better deal by going direct to one of the big six, with a tariff that doesn't show on any of the comparison sites AFAIK.

I've come to the conclusion that the price comparison websites themselves are a bit of a scam, and you can get a better deal by going direct, with the trade-off being that you have to do more work yourself to track down the best deal.
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Old 16th May 2018, 17:38
  #4 (permalink)  

Nigerian In Law
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Haven't been there, never done that.
Age: 60
Posts: 990
It's a minefield (figuratively). When I renewed last month with Winston Wolf's insurers the renewal was 15% cheaper than the previous year as an existing customer. When I asked how come the very friendly, polite human told me it was because I had elected not to automatically renew when I took the policy out.

Apparently if I had left the option to auto renew ticked my premium would have increased.

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Old 16th May 2018, 17:41
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Join Date: May 2002
Location: glasgow
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I had a different outcome with Direct Line.Their renewal had a big increase but on phoning them was told to get a quote from Direct Line online and they would match it.
Result was a slight reduction on previous year!
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Old 16th May 2018, 17:50
  #6 (permalink)  
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I have insured my car with the manufacturer's-named insurance company since 2012 (when the car was new). The premium was 'reasonable'.
Last year they offloaded the insurance company to a new organisation (but kept the company name) and significantly increased the premium.
When I objected I was given a token small discount,and again this year a similar significant increase and a similar small token discount.
When I asked why I should pay an inflated amount, the only reason I was given was that they use manufacturer's parts.
The first company I approached quoted me half the price - though when I have added-in extras I'm still saving 25%.
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Old 16th May 2018, 17:54
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I am incensed with Liverpool Victoria. Having gone through a chat where I asked incisive questions about age before buying the hot cars and I was assured that would not be a factor. After years with them and two policies (they didn't do joint policies then) with 9 years NCB on each, I was hit with large increases. Next year, my two BMW's came to over a thousand quid. I phoned them and demanded to speak with a senior customer relations person. This they complied with.

I told her that I'd sold my lovely 635d twin turbo thing primarily because of the cost of insuring it. The running costs had been surprisingly low, and I'd taken a hit on value, but not that bad. Tax was lower than my 318 three door. What was gauling I told her was that the new owner - if you'd met him you wouldn't want to insure him, or annoy him - was given a deal in the 200's. I just couldn't believe it.

It's your road. I got told. WHAT? Genteel bungalows all in a row. But I'm only half a mile from the new owner. It doesn't matter. It's your road. And he's got multi car insurance, a thing I PLEADED to have. I can't drive two cars at once. She said they'd just started doing it. Not one penny did I gain from the 40minute call.

60 years no claim. One insignificant ticket quarter of a century ago . . . bla bla bla. I thought all this blab wasn't going to make much difference, and it didn't. I then get my new quote for this year on the little car. Over two years it's nearly doubled.

The little car is so powerless - nippy at best. Why, if not age? I'm sickened by the whole thing. So many problems at the moment and even loyalty to a big name company counts for nothing. Mind you, compared to Barclays and Lloyds, the kick in the teeth is insignificant. 60 years as premium and 'no risk' with them, and they're seeing me homeless in a few weeks from now just because their rules say all must be tidied up by 80 years old.
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Old 16th May 2018, 19:01
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Southampton
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My daughter moved into her own home about 1/4 mile from us.

Result, premium increased because their road was in a higher risk factor group.

I can't see why though.
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Old 16th May 2018, 20:20
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: San Jose
Posts: 726
I used to have discussions with the Direct Line people about the difference between the quote they'd sent me and what their website was offering and they'd usually agree to give the the lower web price.

Someone in the insurance industry told me to always change insurer every year because existing customers never got as good a deal the ones dangled to entice new customers.
llondel is offline  
Old 16th May 2018, 20:29
  #10 (permalink)  
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llondel, that's what I have found. Existing insurers aren't interested in keeping me as a customer by matching last year's quote. I shop around every year.
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Old 17th May 2018, 09:19
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Currently within the EU
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LV sent me a renewal notice recently, and the price was less than last year.
I was already on maximum NCD, and nothing else has changed. So I haven't phoned up to argue!
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Old 17th May 2018, 10:16
  #12 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Japan
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The insurers themselves are scammed by the dishonesty rife in the country. To keep themselves covered, the scam losses are passed on to the largely innocent customer. So yes, it is a scam, er, no, a SCAM.

An insurance scammer named Floyd,
Insured his car with the reputable Lloyd,
His mate he rear-ended,
Both necks they were bended,
And their claims left the bank with a void.
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Old 17th May 2018, 10:23
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Age: 64
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I last had Car insurance in 1975.

So far I have gotten away with it!
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Old 17th May 2018, 11:38
  #14 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2011
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What, no car?
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Old 17th May 2018, 12:20
  #15 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2008
Location: East Sussex
Posts: 429
There's no such thing as loyalty from Insurance dealers, of whatever type of product.
Their motivation is only "new" business, where the actual carrier of risk the "insurer" is apparently only concerned with trumpeting that they have secured "X" amount of "new" business each month.
This ignores the fact that they have lost most of last years "new" business as renewals only attract a low commission rate.
To compensate, your "premium" is inflated to provide a similar amount as "new" commissions.

You're being treated as mugs, so why be loyal?
Play them at their own game - our car renewal premium this year shot up so we used rice comparison websites and instead of using her name as Main driver, I used my name and added her as a Named Driver.
Result? Hugely lower premium quote, in fact cheaper than last year but same drivers, same everything.
It's even exactly the same insurance provider, with all the same trimmings etc as before, so I suggest that where possible, simply try switching around the main driver and second/additional driver(s to get a "new" business quote as a renewal!

It's not quite a scam, as they do provide the insurance which is mandatory to legally drive on the road.
Just play them at their game knowing that they want "new" business" NOT renewals....
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