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Nev M

Is Direct Line really one of the Best Landlord insurance Companies?

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Hi all,

 

Title says it all really and there my be little for people to say apart from do your research and make your choice. But a few people have suggested to me that Direct Line are one of the best and wondered if this is just good advertising, truth or myth :)

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Are Direct Line the best ?

The best at what ? 

Their priority, as with any listed company, is to their shareholders not their customers. Their customers represent an opportunity to make, capture and increase their profitability.

Your question needs to be more specific.

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How do you define "best"? Cheapest or problem free when putting in a claim.

Just because a broker/underwriter is very efficient  at taking payment, reminding you  the renewal is due and simplifying the paperwork doesn't make them a good  broker/underwriter. In my view until something goes wrong and you have to make a claim you wont know how good they are or if they try to wriggle out of paying on the slightest excuse.

The same principle goes for choosing  a letting agent. Just because you have had no tenancy issues/problems to date only indicates the agent  probably referenced the tenant and you have been lucky. It doesn't matter how much referencing and checks you do as someone could have been previously the perfect tenant.. However tenants split up and lose jobs or just can get into financial difficulties it is how the agent deals with these problems  and how far they go to rectify the issue to a satisfactory conclusion and not wash their hands of the issue at a certain point is a bench mark of a good agent.  

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H,

 

Yes sorry I probably a little vague.

I want in regard to Landlord insurances  covering standard buildings and contents,  malicious accidental damage, legal help and fees etc but especially Tenant Default and from a perspective of readiness and willingness to payout when needed and valid.
For Gas, Electric, Plumbing, Drains was going to do separately with British Gas Home care product.

Currently we rent through the agent to the council and the Agent is paid direct from the council and the agreement with them directly and they cover bad tenants removal and guaranteed rent (Less rent than private renting). The  Agent we have now has been good but certainly had our mix of problems with vandalism, theft, breakages, turning of outside boilers in winter causing £1000+ over a period of time as it froze with one tenant. Learned and still learning some valuable expensive lessons but this agent has been pro active on the most part so far. The agent previous to this kept 4 months rent from all landlords that rented through the council and despite being told the council continued to pay them and then they declared them selves bankrupt and basically went with our money (No Council compensation).

This next rental is through same agent but is a fully private and no guaranteed rent scheme . One of my key concerns it "Tenant Default" insurance as i do not have the guaranteed rent scheme (as before) and intend to take this out. I am unsure if many of the insurance companies honour this but want to protect against bad tenants that don't pay and the long process to remove them. I know i will never know till i have to make a claim for it in reality.

I suppose the question is there any insurance companies that members have dealt with that they feel are more reputable in looking after there customers in an event of a claim. Not so much the cheapest. All the quotes so far are approx £300 too 400 on comparison sites. I have not applied to Direct line yet as not on the comparison sites but will do. I ask about them as they seem to be advertising heavily on there Landlords insurance and seemingly no quibble when coming to claims (Suspect advertising hype) 

 

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If you are looking for a guaranteed rent and eviction (if necessary) type of insurance these need normally to be taken out before the tenancy starts and the tenants referenced with either the same company or approved company.

I have only ever once use one of these insurance type companies which was Rent4sure. There is some bad press about them on forums web etc but my experience was ok and they did what it says on the tin. The rent arrears were paid and they did the eviction. 

However there were deadlines to report late payment of rent and submit paperwork which I suspect would be used as a get out if not complied with.  Rent4Sure also allow a policy to start after the tenancy has started but there is a grace period of 2-3 Months of making a claim. They also accept HB tenants subject to their referencing.

But a good pro-active agent can reduce the need for these policies but they do give peace of mind.

 

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I'm with Direct line for my rentals and my own property.  I have no complaints at all. I like their terms of insurance on what is covered for my rental property. Are they the best? Don't know as yet because you always hope you never have to actually make a claim but Direct Line as with all insurance policies work on the strict rule going back 300 years that if you pay your insurance premium and your claim is genuine then any claim must be honoured.

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A claim can still be genuine and still be refused if the exact lettering of the policy hasn't been followed which is then used as an excuse not to pay out.  Some companies are a lot stricter than others. in using this as a get out.

Many years ago I had a lady friend who was worked for a firm of solicitors who specialized with insurance claims she said Sun Life were one of  the worse company for this . I am sure there are others as well.

It comes up in the news every now and again where it appears an individual has been treated excessively harshly over a minor over sight  within the policy.

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Really appreciate the responses and they where all helpful to me so thank you.

I was using compaingthemartket site and gave me a lot of quotes with Finsbury (Simply Business) being the lowest circa £310pa and i called them to check what "Tenant Default" means on the quote and seems it is rent protection with similar conditions you all mentioned above.

I called Direct Line and they also offer the rent protection and also said they would guarantee to beat any price by 10% or a minimum of £10. 

It was a reputable company i was after and the rent protection rather than the lowest cost and i think that's been answered here best it can be. I will make my choice, roll the dice and take my chances on either Finsbury or Direct Line (waiting for exchange of Contracts date so not doing it right now).

 

Thanks again Grampa, Melboy, RL.

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