Consumers told to fight insurance hike
HOUSEHOLDERS were yesterday told they do not have to accept another round of hikes in home insurance rates.
They were advised there is a range of things they can do to fight any rises -- including shopping around for a better quote and making changes in how they pay their premiums.
Brokers have warned that premiums are to jump by up to 15pc because of the impact of the earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand.
But chief executive of the Consumers Association Dermott Jewell said consumers would be foolish to accept another rise in premiums, which have risen by around 10pc-plus a year for three years now.
Already this year, premiums have risen by 7pc, according to the Central Statistics Office.
Mr Jewell said: "Consumers should not accept further increases. This is especially the case as the cost of renovating, repairing and rebuilding a house has gone down."
He added that consumers should get tough with their insurers and seek out better rates.
"Never automatically renew your insurance and instead check with other insurers to see if you can get a better value quote," he added.
Savings can be made on home insurance costs by having an alarm installed.
It is often cheaper to pay in a lump sum instead of paying by installment, the Consumers Association said.
Consumers who are due to renew their policies in the next two-to-three months should escape the latest rises.