Hardening Insurance Market; What It Means To My Business
Insurers are able to be very selective on the risks that they choose to insure; they can charge higher premiums and offer reduced cover as the capacity to handle certain claims just isn’t there any longer.
This has been seen to the extreme in the Professional Indemnity (PI) markets where 500% increases are commonplace. Excesses are also on the rise across all lines of insurance, but especially PI were once standard excesses of £2,500 are moving towards £50,000.
Where does this leave me?
The insurance market is becoming more challenging for buyers, as carriers look to improve their underwriting profitability and only offer cover when they fully understand the clients’ exposure. They are also reducing their capacity in some key risk areas and tightening their terms and conditions.
So, what can you do to counter this market hardening? Firstly, use a local, independent insurance broker who can take the time to truly understand your business. The key to winning over the underwriters is for your broker to provide them with a comprehensive presentation detailing your needs and reassuring them of the risks.
Other steps include:
• Communicating with your broker — Make sure you meet with your broker to discuss what level of cover and unique policy features your organisation needs. After all, your broker has the insurance expertise to provide you with the most cost-effective, high-quality cover possible.
Ensuring frequent communication with your broker will help you stay informed, supported and, most importantly, covered during these tricky market conditions.
• Starting the renewal process early — In a hard market, you can’t wait until the last minute to secure quality cover. With this in mind, be sure to engage in your policy renewal process as early as possible to give yourself time to gather any documentation required for renewal.
Insurers are also likely to ask more questions than usual before finalising your policy which makes it even more vital to get a head start on the renewal process.
• Investing in risk management — Now more than ever, it’s vital to invest in robust risk management processes and provide documentation of these practices to your insurer upon renewal time.
Liam Wyatt, Director at Lansdowne Woodward, the South’s leading independent insurance broker, commented: “A trusted insurance broker is put to the test during hardening markets. It’s vital that we stay on top of the ever-changing market conditions in order to provide our clients with real value and the best possible cover for their needs.”
Lansdowne Woodward has been helping clients negotiate this volatile market for over 15 years in order to source cost-effective insurance that covers everything they need.