Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

HOW TO AVOID A NASTY INSURANCE SURPRISE; Taking out a Policy Is the First Step - but It's Vital to Ensure It Actually Fits Your Needs. VICKY SHAW Seeks Some Expert Tips

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

HOW TO AVOID A NASTY INSURANCE SURPRISE; Taking out a Policy Is the First Step - but It's Vital to Ensure It Actually Fits Your Needs. VICKY SHAW Seeks Some Expert Tips

Article excerpt

Byline: VICKY SHAW

HAVING insurance brings peace of mind should the worst happen - but it may not be until you actually come to make a claim, that a stumbling block you weren't expecting crops up.

By doing a bit of homework however, you could help ensure you have the right type of cover in place.

Andy Briggs, chief executive officer at Aviva UK Insurance (aviva.co.uk), says: "There is a lot that people can do to help ensure their claims are settled quickly in a fuss-free way, and that's to really understand what their policies do and don't cover, to add to their cover if there is something missing, and to be completely open with their insurer about any pre-existing matters that won't be covered."

Here are Aviva's top tips for consumers, to help ensure there are no nasty surprises and avoid misunderstandings which can crop up when a claim is made...

HOME INSURANCE IF you have a standard policy, consider whether you need additional cover for accidental damage to contents, or home emergency and boiler breakdown cover.

Most home policies don't cover gradual wear and tear, the effects of damp and dry rot, or damage to fences, gates and hedges - so make sure your home is well maintained and in good repair. Keep your insurer informed if you make any changes to your home, such as a change in occupancy or building works.

TRAVEL INSURANCE MAKE sure you tell your insurer what they need to know about your health, such as any pre-existing medical conditions or tests and investigations.

Try to arrange your travel insurance from the day a holiday is booked - not the day the holiday starts. This will help to make sure you're covered if the trip is cancelled. It's also important to make sure you understand the specific cancellation reasons you're covered for if you need to cancel your holiday. …

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