Michelle asked me recently what I have learned since I started working with Hugo Wright as an administrator just over a year ago.
My pre-Hugo Wright experience of insurance was, I suspect, typical of most people’s. By that I mean I viewed it as something that ‘had’ to be done in order to obtain something I wanted, such as a car.
Apart from that I hadn’t really given it a great deal of thought. I think this probably has a lot to do with the context of my life and my experiences up to now – I don’t have a mortgage; I don’t have children or any other dependants; I’m not the main breadwinner within my household; I am (touch wood) rarely ill and have (touch wood again) rarely had to take time off work due to accident or illness; in any case I have had the good fortune to work for companies who have paid contractual sick pay.
In short, I have been lucky, if perhaps a little complacent. I have never been faced with the prospect of losing the things that I value the most, so I haven’t given much thought to what I would do if the worst happened.
The Financial Times Adviser published an article recently that claimed ‘Britons are more likely to take out pet insurance post-Christmas than….get income protection or critical illness cover’.
As a nation, we are more likely to insure our pets and our mobile phones than ourselves. This isn’t to say that we shouldn’t insure our pets – I love my dog and she is insured because I don’t want to be in a position of losing her because I can’t pay for her to have life-saving treatment.
Within the context of my life that decision makes perfect sense, but would it make sense for me to insure my dog and not myself if my family and I were dependent on my income for the roof over our heads and the food on our table?
The worst can and does happen and it makes sense to think about how you would cope financially if you are unable to work for any reason. Statutory Sick Pay is currently £89.35 per week. Could you survive on that? Could you pay your mortgage, rent, council tax, utilities or food bill, let alone your car, holiday, mobile phone etc?
So, back to the initial question of what I have learned...
Rather than being something that just ‘has’ to be done, I now see insurance as a means of protecting what you hold dear. Your insurance cover is, or should be, a window onto what you value in life. Think really hard about what you value and the consequences of losing it. Then think about whether you should insure it. Then contact Hugo Wright.