Monthly Archives: September 2012

The top three reasons why people don’t buy life insurance have stayed the same. People don’t think they need it, they think it is too expensive and they don’t trust companies to pay claims.

It won’t happen to me

Isn’t it amazing that despite a one in 14 million chance of winning the lottery jackpot, people still believe it could be them and religiously buy a ticket every week. And yet, if those same people were told they had a one in 14 million chance of getting cancer, they would immediately think it couldn’t possibly happen to them.

But as we know, the odds of being diagnosed with a serious illness are much higher than those statistics. According to figures from Cancer Research UK, more than one in three people in the UK will develop some form of cancer during their lifetime. While the British Heart Foundation reports that around 146,000 people have a heart attack every year and it is estimated that nearly 1.2 million people in the UK have suffered a stroke.

Of course, we all hope no-one in our family dies or becomes fatally ill, but it makes sense to be prepared.Thanks to better diagnosis, improved treatments and the development of nationwide screening programmes for breast, bowel and cervical cancers, more people than ever before are surviving cancer. But many people don’t appreciate the lasting effects of a serious illness and the impact that can have on the family finances.

The pay out from a critical illness or life insurance policy won’t make the emotional aspect of the death of a loved one or a critical illness easier to deal with. It will, however, mean that a family can keep up with their regular outgoings and ensure their lifestyle isn’t compromised.

I can’t afford it

The perception that life insurance is expensive has always been an issue. Economic conditions mean that consumers now have more reasons to make savings in their everyday expenditure and so it is not surprising that people will not want to add an extra outgoing to their bank statement. But this should not mean that people ignore their long-term financial responsibilities. In particular, how they would cope in the face of a serious illness or death.

In the past life insurance marketing messages concentrated on providing a large lump sum to clear the mortgage or to replace the breadwinner’s income in its entirety. In the current climate, smaller amounts of cover that are affordable and protect the very basic elements of an individual or family’s lifestyle can still make a difference.

Reducing the sum assured will make the product more affordable and clients can always add more cover when they are in a better position financially. £20,000 worth of critical illness cover will make a difference to people and is certainly preferable to none at all. And with the cost of life insurance cover cheaper than it has ever been, a 30 year old could get around £200,000 worth of cover for just £10 a month.

The life insurance company won’t pay out

The published news is often the bad news and unfortunately this has led consumers to believe that life insurance companies will do anything not to pay a claim.

This is a total myth. Where a claim has been declined, it is usually due to a claim made for a condition that isn’t covered on the policy or a case of deliberate non-disclosure.

Providers are in the business to pay clams and it’s vital that clients understand the importance of disclosing their full medical history when applying for protection insurance.

It is equally important that clients are made aware of the key features and any restrictions around the policy at the point of sale, with their adviser. Only then can consumers make an informed decision that what they are buying is right for them.

Most providers are now paying out well over 90 per cent of claims for both critical illness and life cover and less and less claims are declined for non-disclosure. During the last half of 2011 Bright Grey paid 91 per cent of critical illness claims and 97 per cent of life claims. Only 2 per cent of critical illness claims were declined for non-disclosure, which amounted to just 3 people.

In an industry like ours claims statistics are important. They provide reassurance that if your clients ever have to make a claim, they will be paid.

– Roger Edwards is managing director of Bright Grey & Scottish Provident

For a competitive life insurance quotation call us now on 01489 580020 or email info@parkgate.net with your requirements and we will contact you at a convenient time to discuss further.

 

House buying is never easy and finding the right mortgage in the current financial climate is a nightmare. We received great advice from Tim and have ended up with a mortgage that suits our needs and has enabled us to finally get the house that has eluded us for the last 4 years. No hard sell, just sound advice. What more could you ask for? Many thanks.

Lenders are facing a massive £116bn in unpaid interest on interest only mortgages which are due to mature by 2020, according to xit2, a leading asset valuer. Up to 1.3 million interest only mortgages were written at the height of the credit boom, often as a way to get first-time buyers or those with poor credit histories on to the property ladder. However, it is estimated that 1.04 million of these mortgages do not have a final repayment plan in place, meaning the borrower will come to the end of their mortgage term still owing the full capital sum. This could create a major headache for borrowers and banks alike. – www.independent.co.uk/money

 

1million Brits use payday loans to cover monthly bills

28 per cent of Brits use credit cards, overdrafts, payday loans and other loans to cover the cost of household bills each month according to new research from Santander.

Instead of using money from their current account, Brits are borrowing £3.6 billion through payday loans each month to meet the cost of gas, electricity, council tax, water and other household bills, which is equivalent to around £259 for each person borrowing money.

If you are using payday loans, then you should consider giving us a call to see if you are able to remotgage your property and reduce your monthly outlay.

Call 01489 580020 or email info@parkgate.net where we can arrange a mutual time to discuss your requirements.

The chief executive of Lloyds Banking Group has called for banks to become ‘simple and boring’ to win back the trust of the public. Antonio Horta-Osorio said that the public had been let down by “complacent, non-customer focused and inefficient” banks and too much focus had been applied to sales targets, at the cost of providing good, honest service. Speaking at the CBI Scotland annual dinner, Mr Horta-Osorio said: “The banking industry has done itself no favours. Issue by issue and scandal by scandal, the faith and trust in our industry has been eroded.

To restore trust, the industry must change. We must recast the banking model,  retail and commercial banks should be simple and they should be boring.” Mr Horta-Osorio took the opportunity to state that Lloyds had begun to ‘recast’ itself and was “the only bank that supported the ‘ring-fencing’ to separate retail high street banking from investment banking”. Lloyds, as well as a number of other banks, is currently under investigation by the Financial Services Authority (FSA) regarding the miss-selling of financial products to its retail banking customers. – Moneyfacts

This is something that we have been saying for the last 6 years.

The Bank of England has kept interest rates at 0.5% and held off from more stimulus measures.

Its rate-setting Monetary Policy Committee has voted to maintain rates at this historic low for three years.

It also decided not to increase its programme of quantitative easing (QE), having lifted it by £50bn in July to £375bn.

For its part, the European Central Bank in Frankfurt kept eurozone interest rates unchanged at 0.75%.