We believe this case study is a perfect example, demonstrating why it pays to have a reliable, local, independent commercial insurance broker. 

In 2016, prior to becoming a client of HI Commercial, a local landlord found evidence of subsidence at one of their properties. 
At this time they were with another broker, who put forward a claim to pay for the damage caused to the property. The insurer appointed a loss adjuster — a specialist commissioned by the insurer to investigate complex and potentially contentious claims, whose aim it is to determine whether the damage would be covered by the policy. 
Responsible for finding the cause of the damage, the loss adjuster wanted to monitor cracks in the brickwork to establish if there was ongoing movement. After taking regular readings over a period of almost 6 years, the insurer found the claim to be valid. However, they advised the landlord that their property had been under-insured and that they would be required to pay for 30% of the claim, a total value of £12,000. 
By then, this property owner had appointed our team at HI Commercial to be their broker and shortly afterwards discussed the issue that had arisen with their claim. 

Experience Pays 

Taking a closer look, Mike Ratcliffe from HI Commercial did some investigation work of his own. The property was made up of two separate dwellings on the same plot of land. Both were owned by the landlord who had developed the garage to create another rental property. This is where Mike spotted the problem — the sums insured had been allocated incorrectly — the larger sum was covering the smaller property and vice versa. 
This was good news for the landlord, leverage to negotiate, but the insurer refused, insisting they pay the underinsured sum. Mike spoke to the insurer, in this case Aviva, explaining that the landlord had in fact paid the correct premium for the overall site of the 2 properties and that in the past, the sums insured had been allocated incorrectly. Taking a common-sense approach, the insurer finally agreed to cover the full cost of the claim. 

Accurate Property Valuations 

We always recommend getting a professional valuation for the full property portfolio. For the removal of all doubt and for the sake of a few hundred pounds, (HI Commercial is able to arrange this assessment), it could prevent you from wasting your time and a lot of heartache in the future. 
Although this landlord got a good result, the valuation would have provided all of the correct information the insurer needed in the first place. 
Adequate insurance covers more than just the cost of the damage or re-build. It will also cover additional costs such as demolition, professional fees for architects, solicitors’ fees and planning consent if required, factors often overlooked when rebuilding sums insured are being arrived at. 

We ask the right questions 

When providing quotes for clients whether they are completely new to us or we’ve worked with you for many years, our team at HI Commercial will always undertake a thorough review which involves an in-depth questionnaire, requiring detail and input from our clients. This ensures we have all of the information needed to ensure you have adequate protection and in the event of a claim, the insurer will have no wriggle-room to avoid paying out for your claim. 
If you are not sure about your business insurance policies, please call HI Commercial on 01482 247477 for peace of mind that you will be fully protected. 
At your service, at your side — commercial insurance with a personal touch. 
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