Millions of insurance customers could see their policies become invalid when the UK government's advice on home working changes next month, personal finance experts at finder.com have warned.
The government is set to relax its working from home guidance on 1 August, yet research by finder.com has found that a quarter of employees intend to continue doing so on a permanent or semi-permanent basis.
Of those who will do this, seven in 10 are unaware that they may need to inform their insurer about their situation, meaning that 9.7 million Brits could invalidate their home insurance.
According to the Association of British Insurers, the industry's pledge – that customers don’t need to inform their insurer if they work from home while government advice is to do so – will no longer apply next month, but will be reviewed in September.
“With the recent working from home guidelines being ordered by the government, it appears that insurers generally didn’t require customers to keep them informed about the change,” said Danny Butler, insurance specialist at finder.com.
“However, this situation may change when the government’s advice on working from home relaxes, and our research highlights a worrying trend of consumers not being kept sufficiently in the loop by their insurer.”
The research also shows that 43% of home insurance customers have received no communication from their policy provider about working from home, leaving them unsure if their policy or premium has been, or will be, affected.
A further 8% said they had received information, but that it was not clear, meaning that over half of consumers are unsure of their situation.
The findings also indicate that those born between 1946-1980 will be most affected, with 79% of baby boomers, and 79% of generation X adults, saying they are not aware that they will need to inform their insurer about working from home.
Around 70% of both baby boomers and generation X said they had not received any information from their home insurer regarding working from home during lockdown.
This compares with just 42% of millennials saying that they hadn’t receive any communication from their provider, which may suggest that insurers need to do more to communicate with older customers.
“The fact that older generations are much more likely to say they have received no communication is also a concern,” Butler continued.
“Regardless of whether information has been made available to customers or not, it seems that the methods and clarity of communication is something that should be looked at more closely by insurers.”
Author: Chris Seekings
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