No two insurance policies are exactly the same!
“I got the exact same coverage for less.” Impossible, no two insurance policies are exactly the same.
What I feel like saying, “No way”. Over the years, I have read several insurance policies, some for carriers we represent some for our competition. I can assure you that no two insurance policies are exactly the same.
Even if the declaration (Dec) page looks the same, when you start reading the policies side by side there are differences.
Years ago, the insurance industry followed a standard Insurance form either ISO or MSO forms. But now, carriers are writing their own forms. And most carriers have a proprietary enhancement endorsement. When you get into the guts of the policy, the legal document that will pay or not pay when you have a loss, no two are exactly the same.
Why does that matter if the two insurance policies are not exactly not the same?
Generally what the carrier may give in one area they may take away in another.
For example, the carrier might give you $5000 for guns instead of $2500 on your homeowners insurance. But only include $1000 for jewelry instead of $5000.
Depending on the person that may or may not matter. But, if I have a lot of jewelry and no guns, I would be better suited with the 2nd policy. Whereas someone who likes to hunt might be better off with the 1st policy.
But the declaration pages might look the same in this example because those limits are generally in the policy not on the declaration page.
The words and/or can make a huge difference. For example, company A says that we will pay for claims for theft if you have an alarm or if there are signs of a physical damage. Company B says, we will pay for claims for theft if you have an alarm and if there are signs of physical damage. One-word change but a huge difference if there is a claim that needs to be paid.
So, what are you as a client to do?
First, make sure that you are working with an agent.
This way they can find out what is most important to you. Like in the exampleabove, do you need more gun coverage or more coverage on your jewelry.
Take the time to read your policy. Uou will know what coverage that you have and make a list of the top of coverages that you want to have in your new policy. And discuss that with your agent to confirm if they are available or not.
Remember that true cost of your insurance is not just the premium you pay. The total cost of insurance includes your premium, your deductibles, and your uncovered claims.
I had a client call us after she moved her coverage and then proceeded to have an accident where she backed into her garage.
It was then that she discovered that her new insurance company increased her collision deductible from $250 to $1000. And rather than having 1 deductible for the home and auto, like she had with us, she had 2 deductibles she had to pay. Plus, they did not include first loss forgiveness, so on the renewal her premium took a huge jump.
Don’t let this be you.
Do your research, review the coverage. If anyone tells you that they are giving you the same coverage, know that this is never the truth. No two policies are exactly the same!