The clocks have gone back, the darker nights are drawing in and, believe it or not, Christmas is only a few weeks away.
The festive songs are playing in the shops and on radio stations, and as Bing Crosby sings, “He’s making a list and checking it twice”, but in the Christmas rush your clients might have forgotten to check their insurance cover.
We put together a handy checklist that you could use to prompt conversations with your clients about what insurance they may need this wintertime.
1. Breakdown Cover – The winter months bring with them colder, and often unpredictable, weather. It’s worthwhile speaking with your clients to make sure they have breakdown cover as they don’t want to be driving home for Christmas and find themselves stranded in the snow.
2. Contents Insurance – Do your clients need to amend their contents insurance this winter? Have they bought their children a new bike for Christmas? Are they treating their spouse to a new laptop or some expensive jewellery? Many insurers increase their home insurance contents cover over Christmas to account for presents, however this is not always added automatically to all policies. We’d recommend encouraging your clients to check their policy to see if their provider raises contents cover over the festive season.
When taking out contents insurance, your client will have set a value on the items in their house. By the time Father Christmas has been, this could well have increased, which won’t have been factored in when they took out their policy. You may want to discuss increasing their level of cover to include presents, as unfortunately the number of burglaries rises over the Christmas and New Year period.
It might also be worthwhile reminding them to keep any expensive gifts out of sight so they don’t look attractive to burglars. It could be tempting for your clients to hide gifts in the garage or shed away from prying eyes before 25th December, however, this makes them an easy target for thieves. When talking to them about updating their policies, why not remind them to keep their presents in a safe place in their home?
3. Accidental Damage – The festive period is a time for getting together and sometimes accidents can happen. If your clients are having family and friends over for a Christmas or New Year’s Eve party, they may want to add accidental damage to their policy to protect them in case red wine is spilt on their cream carpet or new sofa.
4. Domestic Emergency Cover – Does their home insurance have domestic emergency cover? We’d advise suggesting they check their current home insurance policy to see if it includes this. If it doesn’t, we’d recommend speaking to them about taking out cover separately to protect them if their boiler breaks, pipes burst or they lose hot water.
If your clients are going away this Christmas, another thing you might want to advise them to do is to not turn their heating off, but to turn it down instead, so they don’t come home to frozen pipes.
5. Travel Insurance – That leads us nicely on to our next tip. Are your clients jetting off to warmer climes this festive season to celebrate Christmas in the sun? Remember to tell them they will need travel insurance.
6. Winter Sport Travel Insurance – Maybe your clients are wrapping up warm for a skiing or snowboarding trip this season. Winter sports come with their risks, so before they hit the slopes, make sure they have winter sport travel insurance.
7. Event Insurance – Are your clients organising a Christmas lights switch on, putting on a festive market or will Santa be there in his grotto? Don’t forget to remind them that they will need insurance for their event.
8. Cancellation Insurance – The weather can be ever changeable in the winter, so why not talk to your clients about cancelation cover because sometimes, for unforeseen circumstances, events may need to be called off.
9. Non-Appearance Insurance – If they’ve got a special guest or celebrity at their event, then they might want to think about non-appearance cover – this will protect your clients if their VIP is unable to attend.
10. Santa’s Sleigh – Will Santa be ‘flying’ into their event? Like any other vehicle, Santa’s sleigh needs insuring this winter. In fact, one of our Members provided cover for one of their clients for Santa’s sleigh. If your client has a special feature at their event, we’d suggest encouraging them taking out insurance for it to safeguard it in the case of vandalism or theft.