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Category : Insurance

Trust

The importance of trusts

Trusts are usually simple to set up, but it’s important to select the right type of Trust.

What is a Trust?

A Trust helps ensure a pay-out goes to the people you’d like to benefit from your protection policy – should the worst happen. As the ‘settler’ (the person who creates the Trust), you can choose the people who will benefit (the ‘beneficiaries’). The Trust defines how and when they can receive the money from the insurance company.
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Insurance Business

What is insurance?

What is insurance?

Almost every adult in the UK has taken out some kind of insurance policy – whether it’s to protect themselves, their home, their car, their possessions, or their beloved pets. But what is it?

An insurance policy is essentially a contract taken out with an insurer which pays out an agreed sum of money (in the form of an income or lump sum) on a valid claim. You can buy insurance to cover many aspects of life including your income, health, your business, your car etc… Read More

Home Insurance

Shining a light on home insurance

Shining a light on home insurance

Home and contents insurance seems to be a mystery to many households according to research by the Co-Op, which found more than five million have no cover despite the average value of contents reaching almost £40,000.

On the face of it, this type of insurance seems straightforward. It covers you for the loss of, or damage to, personal possessions in your home; ranging from laptops, TVs and furniture to clothing and jewellery. It’s perhaps when you get to the small print that the problems start. Read More

insurance

Self-Employed lack protection

Self-Employed lack protection

Just 4% of self-employed workers have income protection in place, leaving the majority vulnerable to financial difficulties if they are suddenly forced to stop working through illness or accident.

In its survey of more than 9,000 adults, LV= identified the self-employed as a niche group who would struggle to make ends meet if they stopped earning. This is partly down to the fact that they have no employer’s safety net and little, if anything, in the way of emergency funds.

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Family Insurance

What life insurance is best for your joint mortgage?

What life insurance is best for your joint mortgage?

When you take out a mortgage we would always recommend you take out appropriate life insurance too, so that you know your monthly mortgage payments are covered if things go awry.

If you’re buying on your own, a single life insurance plan will probably do the trick, but if you’re going into joint property ownership, a joint plan may be more appropriate. So, which is best for you?

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Income Protection

Barriers to protection

According to an online survey of 2,000 adults by Royal London, half of those surveyed believe life insurance is essential for someone with a mortgage or dependants and yet only 60% of people with a mortgage have life cover.

While 60% of those surveyed with a mortgage have a life insurance policy, just 29% have critical illness cover and 19% have income protection insurance, suggesting that better education is needed to help make people more aware of the benefits of taking out protection.
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Family Cycle

The value of protection

Buying a new home is possibly one of life’s biggest and most exciting events. It’s also a major financial commitment – one that could be with you for 25 years or more.

Your ability to maintain your mortgage payments relies on a constant income, so how would you continue to make your mortgage repayments if your income was reduced – or stopped? Here we look at two similar scenarios with very different outcomes.
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critical-illness-insurance

Critical Illness cover can make a difference

Critical Illness cover can make a difference

If you’ve ever turned down a recommendation of critical illness because you can’t see the value of it, this real-life case study might make you think again.

Peter Simpson is a successful commercial manager for a Berkshire-based firm. He’s married with three children aged 13, 11 and 9 and has a £297,000 mortgage. His wife gave up work to bring up the kids, making Peter the main breadwinner.

When he was 24, buying his first house, Peter had arranged to see an Openwork adviser who helped him sort out a mortgage and critical illness cover. Over the years, Peter’s circumstances changed; he got married, started a family and moved up the housing ladder. During that time he has stayed close to his adviser and updated his cover in line with his changing circumstances.

The value of critical illness cover
Peter has always been able to see the value of critical illness cover, particularly because his father had sadly died of cancer. Aside from covering his mortgage, Peter also wanted to make sure his wife and children would be OK financially if anything happened to him.

In December 2016, totally out of the blue, Peter had a stroke. He had stopped at a friend’s house on the way to work when he suddenly and unexpectedly experienced a terrible buzzing sensation at the back of his head. He lost the feeling in his right-hand side and his speech became slurred. Spotting something was obviously very wrong, his friend got him into the house and immediately called an ambulance. Within 45 minutes Peter was being treated in hospital with his wife by his side.

When he was back home recuperating, Peter started the claims process, which turned out to be extremely straightforward. After a few phone calls and emails Peter received confirmation that his policies would pay out in full and he could expect £380,000 in his bank account.

Avoiding the financial impact of serious illness
Thanks to careful financial planning and an appreciation of the difference a critical illness plan can have on the financial impact of a serious illness, Peter and his family now have the freedom to make choices.

They have been able to make two platform investments, one that would act as a pension for Peter’s wife, and the other to enable Peter, a higher-rate tax payer, to maximise his personal allowance every tax year. They have also reduced their mortgage and swapped it from interest only to repayment.

This case study highlights the importance of protection especially if you have a loan or you’re the main breadwinner.

Please talk to us if you think you need cover, or you need to update your existing provision.

Social

Could your status update affect your claim?

Could your status update affect your claim?

Given the nature of social media and the millions of us who use it every day, you probably weren’t alone in posting pictures, videos and status updates showing off your recent Christmas presents and festive celebrations.

But did you stop to think that posting information like this on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or Snapchat could be advertising your property, your whereabouts and your latest expensive Christmas gadget to criminals, and potentially void your home insurance?

Counting the cost of burglary
There were 650,000 domestic burglaries in the 12 months to March 2017, costing, on average, £2,267 in stolen valuables and £566 worth of damage.

Figures also show that the number of claims relating to domestic burglary increases by a whopping 36% from November to March. This could be down to the longer nights providing more opportunities for criminal activity, and the likelihood of burglars finding expensive purchases and presents following the Christmas period.

Take a break from social media
If you suffer a break-in shortly after publishing your latest holiday snaps on social media, it could lead to your home insurance provider deciding you are partly at fault for advertising an empty property and this could affect your claim.

Are you vulnerable?
When assessing an application for home insurance, insurers are reportedly considering asking homeowners if they use social media, as the risk of over-sharing becomes more and more common. If you use social media and think it could affect your home insurance, consider taking the following steps to reduce your risk:

  1. Turn off location-based services on the social media accounts you use
  2. Never share your home address on social media
  3. Make your posts private so that only your friends and connections can see them

It also makes sense to review your home insurance cover, especially after Christmas or birthdays when you may have bought or received expensive items.

If you’re concerned you may not have the right type of cover, or you think you might be underinsured, please talk to us.