I’ve been a satisfied Halifax Landlord Insurance policy holder for years up until now. Today it went tits-up. They let me down with their sanctimonious bullshit.
So this is where we depart. Nice knowing ya, losers!
Just to avoid any confusion, this incident occurred on Friday, 23rd September, but i’m only just getting around to publish it now, 27th September. Anyhow, without any further ado, here are my tears…
I received a letter this morning from Halifax, stating the following:
I am writing to advise you that your Landlord Insurance policy has been cancelled with effect from 10/07/2011. If you have any queries regarding your cancellation or would like a new quote based on less or more cover to suit your current circumstances, please call the above number.
Oddly, I only renewed the policy in July 2011, and I had received a confirmation policy pack in August, dated 18th August 2011. So the obvious question, why the FFFF was my policy cancelled with effect from 10th July 2011?
More importantly, have I not been insured during the majority of July and the entirety of August? What if my tenant went medieval and torched the place, would I have been able to make a claim?
As soon I read the letter, I buried my head into my filing cabinet to pull out my insurance policy documents, and then started immediately dialling their enquiry line on the old dog and bone.
After being on hold for 5mins (credit where due. Not bad Halifax, good job), I was put through to an advisor. I explained my situation and her response was,
I’m sorry, but for some reason your direct debit payments were cancelled, that’s why we cancelled your policy. Your last payment was in June. It was a mistake on our end.
I was surprised because, as I explained, I hadn’t changed or cancelled anything. I’m left wondering, can payments really just stop as randomly as that? If so, surely that’s a gigantic security issue, right?
I then proceeded to explain why the situation was even stranger that the policy was cancelled; I renewed two Landlord Insurance polices for two different rental properties in July, on the same day, during the same phoen call.
Both polices were almost identical; they started and end on the same dates, and payments were even scheduled to leave my account on the same date/time. However, only one of them got caught up in this debacle.
We were both perplexed by the situation. She didn’t have a clue why it happened, certainly nor did I.
But surely she should know what happened, or at least try to investigate the issue. Remarkably I couldn’t detect any willingness or initiative from this lady [on the other end of the phone] to investigate the root cause. Although, she was eager to rectify the problem and presumably move onto the next call.
Anyhow, she said I could reinstate the policy from June, all I need to do is play catch-up and pay for the two months I missed. My response…
Wait, what, hang on?!?
You cancelled my policy in June, and I never made a claim since then, but you still want me to pay for July and August?
That doesn’t make sense, surely?
Let me ask you this, if my policy got cancelled in June, and I made a claim in July, would I still have been covered?
Yes. The error was on our end, so you would have still been able to make a claim.
I’m sorry, but for some reason I don’t believe that.
She was clearly NOT pleased with my response.
But I didn’t care.
Halifax may have honoured my claim, but I wasn’t convinced and I couldn’t be sure because it was all hypothetical. I know how insurance companies try every trick in the book to find loopholes in claims.
I thought it was pretty ridiculous that they wanted me to pay those two months that they wrongly excluded me from, in which I didn’t even make a claim.
The only other solution, according to the advisor, was to start a new policy from today. *slaps forehead*
So why did this donkey even offer my the other solution, which in comparison is totally absurd?
The latest offer on the table obviously seemed more reasonable because at least I wouldn’t be paying for 2 months which I didn’t make a claim for.
You’d think that now we have established a solution to proceed that it would be smooth sailing from here.
I SHOULD BE SO LUCKY!
This is when it started getting even more tedious. As I was going through the process of applying for a new policy, I was informed that if I go ahead with the new policy, it would mean I wasn’t insured for the months of July and August.
Guess what that meant? According to their policy, if a property is uninsured for over one month, then it loses it’s no-claims bonus.
Are you fucking kidding me, donkey? They had me over a barrel here, clearly!
So basically, I ended up paying for July and August just to keep my no-claims; in-turn they reinstated my old policy, so on-paper I have always been insured and there was no void period.
Christ! They were the one’s that wrongly cancelled my policy, and they were the ones that took TWO months to inform me. Talk about piss-poor service.
I’ve never been one to go out of my way to get a free meal in life, far from it. It wasn’t about the money, I only had to pay £30 for the 2 months I missed in order to keep my no-claims bonus. However, it’s about principle and being held accountable for your mistakes.
You’d think they would have let me off for July and August and reinstated my policy from June because it was their bloody mistake!
I almost certainly won’t be using Halifax as an insurance provider again.
Right, anyways, rant over.
Disclaimer: I'm just a landlord blogger; I'm 100% not qualified to give legal or financial advice. I'm a doofus. Any information I share is my unqualified opinion, and should never be construed as professional legal or financial advice. You should definitely get advice from a qualified professional for any legal or financial matters. For more information, please read my full disclaimer.