Belinda Bagnall, Managing Director of Residentsline, focuses on the reasons finding the right insurance broker is important for you and your block of flats.

The right insurance broker will take the stress and difficulty out of finding the right policy for your needs and at the right price. But how do you know you’re working with the right one? If finding the right broker for you is causing you a headache, read on for our advice to make things easier.

Why do I need an intermediary or broker?

Property insurance is complicated. Different buildings have different requirements and the options out there can be baffling. Choosing insurance for your car or your phone can be complicated enough. With so many options and different levels of cover with hidden elements lurking in the small print, choosing your own policy is risky at best. You could end up paying more than you need to or, worse, paying what suits your budget, but for a policy that leaves you unknowingly underinsured.

It can be tempting to ‘cut out the middle man’ and go directly to an insurer but, as they’re legally tied to advertising only their own products, you will get an extremely blinkered view of the market. An intermediary or a broker can offer specialist knowledge and a view of what’s available on the market as a whole, all with your specific needs (and budget) in mind.

What will an intermediary or broker do for me?

With access to multiple products across the market, they will match you to the most suitable cover available to suit your needs. They have no obligations to any of the insurers as they work independently, meaning their duty of care is to you as their client (even if there’s a conflict with their own interests, their duty of care to you comes first).

Besides finding you the best policy for the best price, they should be supporting you throughout the entire process as well as the duration of the policy and through to renewal.

A good broker will:

  • Assess your property and identify what your policy needs to include
  • Search the market for the most suitable cover
  • Compare prices from a range of insurers
  • Negotiate the best policy terms with insurers on your behalf
  • Arrange, renew or change your policy with your insurers
  • Collect premiums and process accounts
  • Help you through the claims process

What makes an intermediary or broker stand out from the crowd?

You may think that all property insurance brokers are equal, but there are many factors to consider and making the right decision is vital when you’re insuring something as valuable as property.

Firstly, your broker needs to work with your best interests at heart. They need to find you a policy that’s specific to your property and your needs; searching the market for the lowest possible premium but ensuring you will have the right cover in place (and this may involve negotiating with the insurer on your behalf).

They need the experience and expertise to fully understand your requirements as well as the customer service reputation to assure you that they will go above and beyond (including 24-hour claims support for the duration of your policy, unbiased advice and the willingness to act as an intermediary for organising accounts).

The bottom line

Organising your own insurance is risky and laborious. People often waste their time going down this route, only to end up with cover that doesn’t quite suit their needs or that costs them more than they budgeted for. Using an agent has it’s own risks, as their alliance is with the insurance companies, not with you as their client.

Using an intermediary or broker gets you the best policy, plus the support of their unbiased advice, claims assistance and powers of negotiation. The bottom line is, you are their priority and they will find you the best policy available, for the best price.

Head to the Residentsline website for information on all of our products and services or, if you’d like to speak to one of our fantastic, specialist team, give us a call on 0800 281 235.