Can I cut insurance costs by adding security?

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How making your home and car more secure could reduce the cost of your premiums

We all naturally want to keep our homes and cars safe and have lots of opportunities to do just that. We can install all sorts of additional security measures from hi-tech alarm systems to security cameras, locks and much more. It all helps to keep criminals away, but what impact does it have on your insurance?

New technology to secure your home

As you can see from our review of the best security gadgets, there are plenty of options when it comes to securing your home. You can fit devices such as wireless alarms that alert you or the police to a break-in, smart doorbells that can detect movement if someone is at your door, and security cameras that can relay images to your phone or computer. For more information, read our article on connected security.

Cars now come with advanced alarm systems, immobilisers and tracking devices that make them harder to break into and easier to recover. So, you can do a lot to make your car and home safer.

Can home security save you money?

When your insurer calculates your premium, it considers a number of factors including how secure your home or car is. Taking additional security precautions could reduce your premiums, particularly if you choose a NACOSS Audible, NACOSS Monitored or SSAIB alarm for your home.

Although your upfront savings won’t necessarily be more than you spend on a security system, the long-term benefits may be worth it.

For example, if you buy a hi-tech home alarm system for £700 that’s going to be more expensive than any discount you might get. The benefits, though, go much further than just a discount on your initial premium.

Noel Summerfield, Head of Home Insurance at Admiral, said: “Having security measures in place demonstrates that a customer has taken the time to put in preventative measures to protect their property.

“For example, an alarm can deter burglars, reducing the risk of an insurer having to pay out on a theft claim.”

But the biggest saving, he said, may not come in immediate discounts, but in avoiding future premium increases.

“It also saves the customer money because they then don’t have a claim that leads to an excess and possibly increased premium at renewal,” he added.

“You’re playing the long game, installing security to reduce your chances of making a claim. If you suffer a break-in, or have your car stolen, it may lead to a higher premium when the time comes to renew your policy.

“That alarm system you install, therefore, will keep paying off over time without your realising it. You might not see a big drop in your premium, but you’re reducing the risk of seeing your premiums climb.”

What security should I install?

There is some debate about what types of additional security features work best, and why. Thieves are constantly coming up with ways to get around the latest measures, but the most immediate approach is to make a hard target. Security should be clearly visible on the outside. Advertising the presence of an alarm system and having solid, securely locked doors in place will help you avoid being targeted in the first place.

Home security tips

Burglars are opportunistic in nature and will look for soft targets. Remove temptation by keeping valuable items out of sight, join a Neighbourhood Watch scheme and don’t have large amounts of cash lying around. You can read more in our guide to improving security. If your home looks secure from the outside, it will also be less vulnerable to break-ins.

Car security tips

If thieves can tell your car has an alarm system, immobiliser and tracking device, they’re likely to look elsewhere. There are further measures you can take which won’t affect your premium but will reduce the likelihood of a theft. A thief might disable a car alarm, for example, but struggle if they then have to contend with a steering wheel lock and an immobiliser. If you have a tracking system in place, you still have one final resort even if he or she does manage to steal the car.

The best laid plans…

Of course, no security system will be fool-proof, which is why you need a good insurance policy in place. Our MultiCover Insurance is a great way to cover both your home and your car with one single package. It’s a quick, simple and affordable way to keep both your car and home safe and sound.

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