Home insurance customers are benefiting from increased competition for their business – but price rises could be on the way, analysis from insurance data analytics expert Consumer Intelligence has found.
Average premiums dropped 0.4% to £137 in the year to October, but the last three months have seen increases of 1.2% as claim costs from last winter feed through to prices.
Customers in Wales and the North East are paying the lowest annual bills at £124 and seeing the biggest price falls, with premiums in Wales slipping 4.3% in a year while in the North East they fell 2.6%.
John Blevins, consumer intelligence pricing expert said: “Over the past 12 months claims costs have been the largest driver of rates and they have been dictated by the weather and the increases in escape of water claims.
“London continues to see the highest rate increases with crime rates and specifically burglary generally having a larger impact in urban areas. These crimes however are reducing as home security technology is getting better and more accessible.
“The last three months have seen an overall slight rise in premiums as claims costs from earlier in the year come through but generally pricing for buildings and contents combined policies remain fairly static as this is still a very competitive marketplace.”
The biggest annual bills are seen in London at £183 after prices rose 2.8% in a year while in the East Midlands prices increased 1.7% to £130. Londoners are paying 48% more a year than in Wales and the North East.
Customers with properties built after 2000 pay the lowest bills at £121 and any homes built after 1970 see average bills of £130. But in older homes customers pay the highest bills with houses built before 1895 costing £162 and those built before 1910 costing £156.
Customers are now paying around 1.9% less for home insurance than in February 2014 when Consumer Intelligence – whose data is used by the government’s Office for National Statistics to calculate official inflation statistics – first began collecting prices.