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Why it’s more important than ever to talk GI

First published October 2022, updated September 2023

Insight from Sarah Watts, Head of Intermediary

There’s no question that the cost of living is continuing to increase and real pressures are being placed on households and their budgets across the UK. In a 2021/2022 survey by the Office for National Statistics, around 9 in 10 adults said they’d seen a rise in their cost of living, and nearly a quarter (23%) expressed difficulties paying their usual household bills.

During these difficult economic times, consumers are going to question where their money is actually being spent and the value that they’re getting in return. This is where advisers’ understanding of the home insurance market can make a huge difference, to help clients understand how insurance will help cover costly and unexpected repairs and accidents.  

Home… it’s more than just where you sleep 

Buying a home is a huge achievement. Not only does it bring a sense of security for your clients and their family, but it’s often the biggest financial investment they’ll ever make. That’s pretty huge! Helping your clients protect the things they love is therefore incredibly important, as you can’t predict the future, but you can prepare for it.

As you know, buildings insurance will help protect homes from a vast range of scenarios which can be incredibly expensive to fix. For example, a complex subsidence claim can cost around £30,000 to put right, repairing a flood damaged home is approximately £32,000, and an average fire claim costs around £15,000. These events are less likely to happen, but the sums of money involved are high. 

With the ever changing weather causing claims rise, its so important to ensure your clients stay protected, especially as we've seen flooding claims from drains being unable to cope, increase by 211% between 2017- 2021 and fire claims caused by the rays of the sun increase by 233% compared to 2021. 

The re-mortgage life stage 

In addition to these extreme worst-case scenarios, it’s also smaller lifestyle changes which can affect the amount of protection your clients need. This year more and more homeowners are looking to fix their mortgage through re-mortgaging due to the ongoing increase of interest rates and the costs of moving and paying stamp duty. Given the current economic situation, this is fairly unsurprising and so advisers should think about reviewing their clients home insurance at the re-mortgage stage too. 

This can provide a great opportunity. By providing the full package, not only can advisers continue to build those all-important relationships and become a trusted expert on the mortgage front, but can check a client’s home insurance is up to date and ensure there is adequate cover in place. 

We know it could be a tricky conversation in the current climate as your clients may be looking for ways to cut back, but your expertise can make a valuable difference. By making sure they have the right cover in place now, you could help protect them from high unexpected costs in the future.

Time to re-evaluate 

Our lives are constantly changing and evolving and so your client’s home insurance policy needs to too. What was important when they first picked up their keys could to be very different to what matters to them now. They may have started a family, changed career or completely renovated their house. We’ve got a new handy home insurance questionnaire and video which you can send to your clients to help you assess their current circumstances and make sure they’ve got the right cover for their home . 

*The rising cost of living and its impact on individuals in Great Britain - Office for National Statistics