26th February 2016

Over 20% of Home Insurance Claims are Rejected

Home insurance policies are too complicated, and few would tell you otherwise.

Reject Accept sign

The complexity of insurance policies can make it difficult for policyholders to get the settlement they deserve in the event of a claim – and the problem may be even worse than we feared.

The Association of British Insurers conducted an analysis of claims made throughout 2013 and 2014. Their figures are based on 6.9 million claims handled by 19 insurers. This included 4.3 million motor insurance claims, 1.8 million home insurance claims, and 800,000 travel insurance claims.

They found that more than one in five home insurance claims is unsuccessful – that’s over 20%.

Compare this to motor insurance claims, 99% of which result in a payout for the policyholder.

And the reason why so many home insurance claims are rejected? Because home insurance policies are too complicated. Specifically, there are too many arrangements out there in which it’s not been made clear just what’s covered in the terms of the policy.

For example, of the 21% of claims that were rejected in 2013-2014, some policyholders had made claims that were valued below the policy excess, while others had been sold inadequate or insufficient cover for their insurance requirements. And while some home insurance policies come with add-ons to cover eventualities such as this, these documents are complicated enough. Adding to the policy will only add to the complexity.

But then there are those claims that are rejected as a result of a “failure” on the part of the policyholders. Some home insurance policies stipulate that homeowners must take steps to maintain their property. So if, for instance, a home suffers roof damage as a result of previous faults that had been identified but not addressed, then the claim is less likely to be successful.

Trust & Honesty

ABI director general Huw Evans claims that these figures were published in order to encourage consumer trust. “Contrary to popular belief,” he said, “insurers want to pay honest claims. It helps nobody when customers have bought the wrong product or have not disclosed important information.

“So we will use this analysis to drive awareness campaigns to improve even further the acceptance rates for home and travel. Buying insurance should never just be about getting the cheapest price in the quickest time possible. It should be about ensuring you have the right product for your hour of need.”

How to Ensure Your Home Insurance Claim Is a Success

If you want to increase your chances of receiving the settlement you deserve, the ABI suggest that you take the time to carefully read the terms and conditions whenever buying or renewing your home insurance. Familiarise yourself with what exactly is covered, and with any repair or maintenance responsibilities that are stipulated.

This is excellent advice, but there’s something else you should do if you want to increase your claim’s chance of success: get a loss assessor on your side.

A professional Harris Balcombe loss assessor will be the only party in the entire claims process who can be trusted to act with your best interests in mind. The specific services we offer will vary depending on the nature of the claim, but here’s just some of the ways we can help you to receive the payout you need:

  • We’ll take control of the situation and ensure that your insurance company doesn’t call all the shots in deciding how your home is dealt with.
  • We’ll prepare the paperwork and make sure that you’re only claiming for items that are covered in your policy.
  • We’ll present and negotiate your whole claim, including issues concerning the building, contents, and alternative accommodation.
  • We’ll support and advise you throughout the entire process, and we’ll always be around to answer your questions and address your concerns.

For more information about how Harris Balcombe can help make your home insurance claim a success, call our 24/7 helpline on 0844 544 1699.

Call our 24/7 helpline on 0330 022 9179 for a free no obligations assessment

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