A recent article in the Telegraph highlighted market research commissioned to look into the cost of storage insurance and whether consumers are being overcharged when they take out storage insurance through self storage operators. Spoiler alert– they are!
Consumers Routinely Overcharged
In a report which shocked absolutely no-one in our office, it was revealed that some of the larger self storage operators are overcharging consumers, routinely charging as much as three times the amount quoted by some specialist insurers like Store Insure for the same amount of cover.
A number of the larger self storage facilities also use dubious tactics to get customers to take out their insurance cover without shopping around – including sometimes suggesting that they cannot shop around for insurance (1 in 6 of those surveyed said they felt under pressure to take out insurance from the storage provider). ‘Bundling’ insurance in with the storage cost is another tactic used; leaving customers unsure of whether they could save money by taking their storage insurance out through a specialist provider. One storage company, when asked by a mystery shopper if they could have a storage quote without insurance, was told that they were at liberty to take insurance elsewhere but that the cost of the storage would not be reduced if they did! The company in question later insisted that this was not their policy.
Consumer Apathy to Blame
Some of the larger self storage operators rely on the fact that some customers don’t realise that storage insurance cover is available separately (13 % of those asked) and a number of those questioned (16%) said they couldn’t be bothered to shop around.
It Pays to Shop Around
The key takeaway from this research for consumers is that they should definitely shop around for storage insurance rather than assume that the cover provided by the storage provider provides the best value. Some of the most startling discrepancies uncovered by the research showed consumers being charged as much as 7 times more for their storage insurance cover. If your storage provider insists that you have to take out cover via them, get a detailed breakdown of the cover on offer, the cost and extent of the insurance and get a comparative quote. If the insurance cost quoted by your provider is excessive, challenge them. It may even be worth choosing a different provider if they are not prepared to concede the point.
Chose a Specialist Insurer
Our Flexible, specialist storage insurance is underwritten by Lloyds of London and offers some of the most comprehensive cover available in the market, coupled with zero excess on claims from standard policies. Goods in transit cover is included as standard, as well as protection from flood, fire, theft from the storage unit and moth and vermin damage (see policy info for restrictions).
For more information on our cover or to get a comparative quote or visit our website.