Home insurance customers who have made one claim pay more than half (on average 57%), than those who haven’t claimed, a Which? investigation has found.
While it is typically cheaper to insure a home than a car, the consumer champion found the cost of claiming on home insurance can be much higher.
Drivers with two recent car insurance claims paid on average £69 more than those who hadn’t claimed. However, two recent home insurance claims bumped up the average premium from £161 (no claims) to £359 (two claims) – a 123 per cent increase.
Even home insurance customers with just one recent claim paid on average £91 (57%) more than customers with no claims.
The reason for home insurance customers facing steeper prices could be down to the nature of their claims. Among the home insurance claimants, the most commonly reported reasons for claiming were accidental loss or damage at home (30%); escape of water (25%); and thefts from the home (9%) – all of which could mean complex or costly replacements, or potential concerns about the security of the property.
The three most commonly reported car insurance claims were accidents where the driver was at fault but there were no injuries (35%); non-fault accidents where all costs and excesses had been recovered (27%); and single-vehicle accidents (9%).
Which? enlisted the help of comparison site GoCompare to look at the averages of millions of quotes received by drivers and households using its service between January and August 2021.
Unsurprisingly, customers who had made multiple claims were quoted more on average, and the premium increased the more claims had been made.
However, among car insurance customers, drivers who had made one claim were on average paying £81 (9%) less than those who had not claimed before. A possible explanation is that drivers who take the time to shop around for better deals can avoid paying more.
Drivers who had made two claims paid on average £69 (8%) more than those who had not claimed. Those who’d made four claims paid on average £469 (53%) more.
Jenny Ross, Editor of Which? Money, said:
“The data shows that making claims can significantly affect the price of your insurance, especially for your home. If you’re unhappy with your increased premium, make sure you shop around as other insurers might be prepared to cover you for less.
“You might decide it’s not worth claiming at all, but insurers can ask you to disclose incidents that could have led to a claim. Honesty is always the best policy, otherwise your insurance could be invalidated.”
Ryan Fulthorpe, car and home expert at GoCompare, said:
“Making a claim on a car and home insurance policy will almost certainly increase your premiums the following year. And having looked at the data, it shows that the more claims you make, the more it will impact the price you pay.
“A number of motorists will have a claim on their insurance and as our stats show, this doesn’t have to impact the price you pay if you have one claim on your policy. Insurance companies will treat claims differently so you might find that by shopping around, you may not end up out of pocket.
“However, when you start adding two claims into the mix, the general impact is significant.
Insurers will treat those who have more than one claim differently as they take into account a propensity to claim, so the more claims you have, the more likely you are to make more.”
Notes to editors
Which? advice on things to consider before claiming
- Check your excess. This bites into the benefit you get from claiming. If, after the excess, you’re only likely to receive a small amount from the insurer, claiming might not be worth it.
- Consider the potential impact of claiming on a no-claims discount, if you have one
- Run some quotes with other providers – for a rough idea of how much a declared claim could impact your premium
- Regardless of whether you decide to claim, always tell your insurer and be honest with them. If an insurer learns you have failed to disclose a fact (especially while filling in a form asking you about your history), it could at worst consider this ‘non-disclosure’ and use it as a basis to decline a claim or cancel a policy
Average prices claimants pay
|2021 average quoted premium||Difference compared with 0 claims (£)||Difference compared with 0 claims (%)|
Figures supplied by GoCompare. They reflect the customers who used its service between January and August 2021.
Which? is the UK’s consumer champion, here to make life simpler, fairer and safer for everyone. Our research gets to the heart of consumer issues, our advice is impartial, and our rigorous product tests lead to expert recommendations. We’re the independent consumer voice that influences politicians and lawmakers, investigates, holds businesses to account and makes change happen. As an organisation we’re not for profit and all for making consumers more powerful.
The information in this press release is for editorial use by journalists and media outlets only. Any business seeking to reproduce information in this release should contact the Which? Endorsement Scheme team at email@example.com.