DATE: 04/03/2019
CATEGORY: Awesome news, Blog, Insurance, Life and Income Protection, Managing risk, Personal risk insurance, Pre-approval, Stories of reinvention

Awesome’s expert insurance advice pays big dividends

We’ve all been there and done that when it comes to making New Year’s resolutions. Setting goals that sounded great over a bottle of champers can be awesome until the new year begins to unfold, and we become distracted with other demands and priorities.

One New Year wish that many people receive is, “I hope you have a happy, healthy, fulfilling and exciting New Year. We wish that for our clients and loved ones too.

The reality is that those things are harder to achieve if you don’t have money and you don’t have choice. One of the main ways you can gain choice is to put a little money aside for a rainy day. Knowing you have access to funds in case something pops up that you don’t expect provides extraordinary peace of mind.

Unless you have a compelling reason to save, regular commitments, or a robust strategy in place to prevent spare cash escaping, it’s easy to put things off.

Which is why setting aside money for paying insurance premiums is a smart savings strategy. Setting aside access to cash if you ever find yourself needing more means you’re covered should anything go wrong.

The reality is that as we age, inevitably we will need a bit of TLC. Having access to money to address those things that need maintenance isn’t always easy to find. It’s not so different from caring for your house or your car—when things are broken, sometimes they need fixing fast. Being caught short is inconvenient and stressful. When it comes to your health it can mean the difference between life and death.

put in place a Plan B

A New Year resolution we’d like to encourage our clients to make (even though we’re already well into the year) is to put in place a Plan B.  It worries us that many Kiwis are notoriously underinsured. Most New Zealanders have a “she’ll be right” attitude when it comes to insurance and very few have a plan in place. Often people assume it will be expensive and are unaware of how cost-effective, and important, insurance is.

A Plan B is, is knowing that when something unexpected happens you’ve got your fallback position sorted. Having no fallback is not a fallback. It’s not Nasa science, right? It could well be that if something happens and you lose your income, you know you can fall back on your parents or family to help you for a short period of time.

If something happens and you can’t afford your mortgage, your fallback position may be that you’re happy to downsize and move to something more affordable. If that’s your Plan B that’s great, the important thing is that you have one.

We think the smartest Plan B is to cost-effectively insure against risk. I don’t advocate over insuring and then scrambling to make ends meet but to have a Plan B that you have allowed for and insured for.

Our clients are increasingly surprised and delighted by how cost-effective many of our insurance recommendations can be. We are equally delighted to see those solutions deliver the outcomes they are intended to and to see the difference risk insurance has made to people’s lives. When something happens to us everyone around us and those we care most about is impacted.

Having a Plan B means you can avoid a lot of unnecessary stress and anxiety

Recently one of our clients suffered a serious illness. Fortunately, they had taken out comprehensive cover. At the time they had recently started living together. They told us, “We’ve worked hard all our lives. We want to make sure that should anything happen to either of us is that we still have a good quality-of-life, and each of us was looked after.”

I recall at the time it was a significant investment for them. As we do with all our advice and recommendations we always make sure we act with our client’s best interests at heart. When it comes to protecting against risk our goal is always to ensure that people get the best bang for their bucks should anything come unstuck.

And it did come unstuck— two and half years after they originally took out cover. Out of the blue, I received an email to say there had been a serious health condition. Happily, when my client emailed the prognosis was good. He told me he had been lucky because he had an understanding employer who gave him plenty of paid leave to get recover following surgery and treatment.

In his and his partner’s mind, they had no need to claim on any covers in place. They managed to stay afloat, but then decided, “Hey, we want to maximise our lifestyle. We’ve got this risk cover that Laurie helped us put in place, let’s contact him and see if there is any possibility of a making a claim.”

But, hey, that’s what risk plans are all about—enjoying quality of the life you have left to live. That’s what they were paying for and that’s what the insurance company delivered. I was happy to put my clients straight and help them through the claims process. They had felt a little guilty because their health was now in the clear and felt that perhaps it would be wrong to claim on their insurance.

They were delighted to receive a claim payment for more than half a million dollars. Initially, they couldn’t believe it, given they were now back to normal health. We were thrilled to also receive the following feedback:

“Firstly, may we thank you both for the magnificent service both companies have provided to us. Partners Life humane customer-centricity has been very special to experience. Laurie told us back when we first signed up that this differentiated them from other insurers – we now know that to be true. At a time of extreme stress and hardship, it has been a comfort to know you are there for us. A heartfelt thanks again to you personally and all those who stand behind you.”

Since then they have used that money to not only become freehold but to further protect their futures by purchasing an investment property. We’re delighted to see in action the outcomes we recommended.

avoid overwhelm

Sometimes because of the wide range of choices, people feel overwhelmed and stall on making decisions. There’s a lot to consider and it’s easy to feel like there is too much information and too much choice. Which is why we make it easy.

Plus, sometimes, in order to be approved for risk cover it can seem like there are too many things to do. For example, often insurers request medical records and also ask for blood tests to be taken.

But there are some added benefits to insurers thoroughness. Sometimes people find that in the process of applying for cover. Not only do you get a free medical, but you can be proactive in detecting things that may need further looking into.

What you don’t want to do is over-analyse upfront and worry about what cover to take—and then stall applying. In reality, it’s far better to apply for comprehensive cover and wait until you are certain that the insurer is prepared to offer you insurance before making up your mind regarding what cover to accept.

For example, some people find out that, due to a pre-existing condition, they are excluded from some types of cover. The best thing we find, rather like getting a pre-approval for a home loan, is to apply for insurance cover in advance. What’s the sense of worrying in advance, only to find there is an issue when you could start the ball bouncing earlier and deal with details then?

worried about the cost?

My role as an insurance adviser is to provide you with options and information and recommendations for you to make a fully considered decision. But it’s not to put you under pressure to sign up for a big expensive plan. Which is why we recommend a needs analysis.

By gathering the facts, reviewing your current situation and any insurances in place, you can make informed decisions – giving you peace of mind knowing you’ve got the best possible cover at the lowest price.

do you know what you want?

If you already have a clear view on the type and amount of cover you need, or on the type of cover you would like to know more about, let us know and we’ll get it sorted.

need advice?

Alternatively, for a comprehensive, obligation free assessment contact us. We’ll demystify some common myths about insurance, and we’ll help you understand everything you need to know to make the best possible choices. All with no pressure, hype or sales pitch.

For the cost of a cup of coffee a day or that extra glass of vino on Friday you can protect your futures and your lifestyle.

So, coming back to money and resolutions, our resolution this year is to help more clients have a Plan B.  On that note, we take your insurance seriously. As a special way of saying how much we value our relationship with our clients, and to highlight the importance we place on having a Plan B, if you’re an Awesome client and you take out comprehensive risk cover during March, we’ll pay the first three months premiums.

That’s three months of risk cover FREE. It shows our commitment to your welfare and is our way of showing how important it is to us that we ensure you’re looked after.

Whatever you do make a call. Don’t just park it! Avoid unwelcome surprises, seek certainty and peace of mind early.

Did you enjoy this article? You might like:

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Posted in Awesome news, Blog, Insurance, Life and Income Protection, Managing risk, Personal risk insurance, Pre-approval, Stories of reinvention

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