How to review your insurance policies

Last updated: Nov 16th, 2012
News by Emma Gunn
House and car under umbrella

From 21 December, new EU legislation will come into force that effectively bans insurers from taking sex into account when pricing policies.

But while some policyholders might see the cost of their cover fall slightly, the majority of us can expect to see costs rise. To avoid any nasty surprises, now is the time to review your policies.

CHECK WHAT YOU'VE GOT

It might be tempting to bury your head in the sand and deal with the changes when they actually come into effect but it's vital you sit down and review your policies.

You should list all the policies you have, and all those you are likely to take out in the next year. The most important areas to look at are income protection, life and critical illness cover, car insurance and annuities.

Compare health insurance quotes

ARE YOU GOING TO LOSE OUT?

Next you need to work out how the changes will affect you personally. There is a lot of uncertainty in the market as to how much prices will change after the new rules come into effect, but broadly speaking it is worth looking into whether your rates will go up or if you would benefit from taking out a policy early.

Under the new rules, women are likely to experience higher premiums when taking out car insurance policies as well as on their life and health insurance.

Meanwhile, men should expect to pay higher income protection insurance premiums but receive lower annuity rates.

Find the best annuity rate for your circumstances

GET SOME ADVICE

If you have been considering a new policy, it might be worth speaking to an adviser about taking it out before the changes come in to avoid the price hikes. It can take a while to arrange a policy so it's important to act fast.

But remember, don't rush into buying anything because you are worried you will miss out – choosing the right policy is more important than just opting for the one with the cheapest premiums.