Car Insurance Uncovered

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Will a car insurance broker always get me the cheapest deal? When it is time for you to choose your car insurance it really does pay to do lots of research.
If you do not have time to do this yourself, an insurance broker could be the solution.
Some insurance brokers will search everywhere possible to find you the best deal, this is known as 'whole of market' where as others will only search a limited area.
Some intermediaries will also sell policies under their own brand names.
When it comes to car insurance, however, very few brokers are 'whole of market' so they probably will not find the best deal for you.
A few will also receive commission from insurers.
Can I cancel my car insurance policy and switch companies before my renewal date without losing money? In an answer no.
You will get a proportion of the annual premium back if you change your premium before your renewal date.
Depending on how close you are to renewal will determine how much you will get back.
If you have claimed on the policy, you will not get anything back.
If you cancel, insurers will charge you a fee, which tends to be between 25 and 35 pounds.
How do insurers set premiums? Insurers set premiums by looking at the likelihood of you having an accident, the cost of repairs if you do have an accident and the probability of your car been stolen or broken into.
They assess these according to where you live, the type of car you drive, age, occupation and where the car is kept overnight.
When I ring around for car insurance quotes, there is such a huge difference.
Why do they vary so much for the same type of cover? Car insurers tend to specialise in certain areas of the market, for example high or low risk or people over a certain age.
You will get a very uncompetitive quote if the insurer you call does not specialise in covering people with your profile.
Will it cost me more to pay by instalments? If you pay monthly, insurers will charge interest that will range from 6 to 29 percent.
If you had a 700 pound annual premium with an average APR of 18 percent this would add 126 pounds to your costs.
My car has been written off, but my insurance company offered me much less than I believe it is worth.
What can I do? Car insurers will normally pay out the market value of your car if it is written off or stolen.
This information comes from industry accepted price guides.
However, the amount they offer will not take into account the condition of your car particularly if it was in good condition.
This means if you had sold it you would have got more.
You can put in a complaint if you feel that the insurance company is selling you short.
You will need to gather evidence of what your car was really worth, for example, adverts for cars similar to yours that are being offered for more than the amount your insurer is offering.
If you want to take matters further, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) if your insurer is a member.
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