Policy Expert - Beware, no cover for 1+ acres but it is not stated ANYWHERE!

Hi folks

A phenomenal almost 100% rise in our B+C insurance at renewal this year has left us looking at other options...

Coming in by far the cheapest is Policy Expert.  But we've tried them before in the past and - quite bizarrely - we can't use them because our garden is larger than one acre. 

There's no mention of this in any of their literature.  Even some of their agents are unaware of it.  We found out inadvertently by pure chance when speaking to an adviser on the phone a few years back.  And yet it would seem that if we took out the policy it would technically be invalid because of this.

1. Are there any insurance "rules" relevant to this?  If a company can impose terms on the insurance but not make you aware of them, then surely they could impose ANY rules and get out of any claims.  ("Sorry, you're not insured because you've got a sloped roof.  I know it doesn't say it in policy booklet, but tough, those are the rules.").

2. With that in mind, what would happen if I went ahead with the insurance?  Say there was a burglary and we put in a claim.  Could they really say "Sorry, you're not covered because you have a garden of more than an acre, and it doesn't matter than that it irrelevant, nor that we didn't tell you".  

3. Who is the ombudsman or similar who overlooks insurance and would it be worth me making them aware?  

Many thanks
     

Comments

  • DullGreyGuy
    DullGreyGuy Posts: 9,010
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    1. For them to reject a claim it either has to be in the policy book and/or is a question definitively asked (or stated as an assumption) during the purchase process. There cannot be unwritten rules nor can they rely on you offering up information that they don't ask you about.

    2. You'd complain, assuming they didn't uphold the complaint then you'd take it to the ombudsman who'd side with you if its as you say

    3. Oversight of insurance is more complex but it's the ombudsman that takes in matters from consumers (other than companies operating without a license) however only after you've first complained to the company in question. 
  • That's really helpful.  Thank you very much.  Not even sure I'd want to go with an insurer who operates in such a way, but the price is so good I'm not sure I can resist!  

    It makes you wonder how many people there might be with a large garden and a policy with them, who unbeknown might have a fight on their hands should the need to claim arise.  At least by the sounds of it they'd win :smile:
  • That's really helpful.  Thank you very much.  Not even sure I'd want to go with an insurer who operates in such a way, but the price is so good I'm not sure I can resist!  

    It makes you wonder how many people there might be with a large garden and a policy with them, who unbeknown might have a fight on their hands should the need to claim arise.  At least by the sounds of it they'd win :smile:
    If I were a betting person, I suspect its the person that's said there is a 1 acre limit is the one in error given its no where else... maybe they used to have such a limit and its fallen away and they've not realised/forgotten etc. 

    Unfortunately call centres are a breeding ground for urban myths... there can be a kernel of truth to it but it's not right overall. A common one that you'll find repeated a lot is that it's illegal to have more than one motor policy on a vehicle. On the basis that there are a dozen or so companies that specialise in selling secondary insurance for cars its clearly not illegal (in reality its legal but causes headaches)
  • I've just taken out a policy with these using the farm name and not  a street number ( a non working farm ) They came back to me wanting me to answer a few questions, and one was " was our property less then 10 acres " we are about 2 acres, hope that helps 
    Jane x
  • Thanks @rockchick113 - only just seen your reply.  Yes, that's very helpful, thank you very much.  

    Interesting how the limit was 1 acre for us and 10 acres for you.  As per the OP, it was a while back when they told us about this stipulation, so perhaps the acreage limit has increased?  Regardless, it's good news :) 

    I presume they came back to you with the questions before the policy was accepted or started?  If so, how soon after the application did they ask?  

    Thanks again for the help
  • Thanks @rockchick113 - only just seen your reply.  Yes, that's very helpful, thank you very much.  

    Interesting how the limit was 1 acre for us and 10 acres for you.  As per the OP, it was a while back when they told us about this stipulation, so perhaps the acreage limit has increased?  Regardless, it's good news :) 

    I presume they came back to you with the questions before the policy was accepted or started?  If so, how soon after the application did they ask?  

    Thanks again for the help
    They had sent the questions within a few days,It was the underwriters that had asked for more info, I rang them with the answers and within 24 hours they said they happy to insure
    Jane x
  • Thank you - that's very helpful.
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