From 1 July 2021, you might notice a change in your home, contents and car insurance renewal notices: your old premium sitting alongside your new one.
This change is coming into effect across all of Australia after NSW introduced similar changes in 2019.
This might seem like a minor difference, but it could lead to some major insurance savings.
By displaying the two premiums side-by-side, you can see exactly how much more you’ll be paying for the same policy compared to the year before, which presents you with the perfect opportunity to compare and potentially save.
Here’s what to look for in your changed insurance renewal notices and how you can reap the benefits.
What to look for
As you now know, your renewal notices for home, contents and car insurance will highlight both the new and current (old) premium.
Where exactly the two figures are displayed will probably vary between insurance providers and notices, but the General Insurance Code of Practice states that insurance companies will include a comparison of the two premiums and outline how the numbers were calculated.1
Of course, you can always get out the old trusty calculator and do the sums yourself if your renewal notice doesn’t make the difference in premiums clear.
As for where to look for your actual renewal notice (if you don’t receive it in the post), search in your email inbox for messages from your provider and for keywords (like ‘renewal’) and PDF attachments. Alternatively, you might find your notice in your provider’s online customer portal, so simply log in to access it.
What you can do next
After seeing your new premium, think about your next move: will you simply accept the new – and potentially higher – figure, or will you do something about it? A Compare the Market survey found that most Australians simply accept their old premium without challenging it.
If you decide to do something about it, here’s what you can do:
- Put your renewal notice somewhere you can always see it, like on the fridge or benchtop (print off the notice if you receive it electronically).
- Set aside some time to sit down and go through your notice. Consider the new price of your policy against the coverage you get and weigh up whether the policy is still right for you.
- Decide on your next course of action. This can be accepting your new premium if you’re satisfied with the cost or contacting your provider to challenge your new premium. If you’re not entirely happy with their response, or if you’d simply prefer not to call them, it’s time to be proactive and look for another deal.
Compare the Market’s insurance expert, Stephen Zeller, says Australians should have the confidence to challenge any increase in premiums.
“The insurance companies know that a certain percentage of customers won’t challenge an increase to their premiums, often because the increase will be relatively small, or because people don’t know what they are currently paying and assume the new premium ‘looks about right’,” Mr Zeller said.
“But now the new premium will be put into greater context because the providers must display the difference year-on-year, so customers will see precisely how much extra they’re going to be charged.
“This puts them in a stronger position to negotiate a cheaper deal with their current insurer or shop around for another provider.
“The important thing is that people do something; otherwise, they’ll just continue to pay more and more every year.”
Your one-stop-shop for insurance comparison
If negotiating with your provider doesn’t produce the result you were hoping for, or you simply chose not to call them, another option is to compare other insurance policies on the market.
You might find policies with lower premiums, more attractive benefits and better coverage.
Simply enter in a couple of details about you and your insurance needs and compare from the range of policies we have available. Simples!
1 Insurance Council of Australia – General Insurance Code of Practice. Published January 2020. Accessed June 2021.