INSURANCE can help protect you against unexpected costs, but you should make sure you’re not wasting money on extras you don’t need.

It’s a good idea to be protected in case something goes wrong, but you might find you’re paying too much for cover.

Alex Hasty is an insurance expert at Compare the Market


Alex Hasty is an insurance expert at Compare the Market

With the cost of living on the rise, many Brits are looking for ways to reduce their spending.

Alex Hasty, an insurance expert at comparison website Compare the Market, has shared his top tips for cutting costs.

For example, you might be paying for extra cover that’s already included on your car or home insurance.

But before you make any changes to your policies, it’s important to read them thoroughly.

Don’t cancel insurance that you need unless you’re sure that you will be protected in another way.

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You can use a comparison website such as Compare the Market,, Go Compare or Moneysupermarket to find the best deal for you.

We explain how to stop wasting money on unnecessary insurance.

Gadgets and white goods

You should check whether you really need separate gadgets and white goods insurance.

These products are often covered by your home contents policy, so you might be wasting money by doubling up.

They could also be protected by the manufacturer’s warranty – so take a look at those policies too.

“Contents insurance usually covers your possessions and items inside the home and against incidents such as theft, fire and flood damage,” Alex said.

“You can get add-ons to your home insurance could include accidental damage and personal possessions cover outside of the home and doing this will likely cost significantly less than taking out a separate gadget insurance policy.”

Make sure you read your policy carefully to check you’re covered both in and outside your home before you cancel any gadgets insurance.

You can use a comparison website to search for policies that include add-ons for accidental damage and risks outside your home.

If you’re going to pay for an add on to your home insurance, it’s important to read the details carefully before you buy.

Independent breakdown cover

Check your car insurance policy to see if it covers you if you break down.

If it does, you could be wasting money on separate breakdown cover.

“It’s possible that you might be paying twice for the same protection,” Alex said.

“For example, you might have purchased independent breakdown motor cover, while having cover included in your existing car insurance policy.”

If you’re not sure whether you’re covered for breakdowns, contact your car insurance provider directly to check.

Other common extras on car policies are legal cover and the provision of a courtesy car if you need one, so check your cover for these before you shell out for them separately.

Check your bank account

You could be paying twice for the same insurance if you get perks through a paid-for bank account or credit card.

“Some paid-for bank accounts or credit cards include benefits like phone insurance, travel insurance, and breakdown cover,” Alex said.

Again, if you’re in doubt you should ask your provider exactly what you’re covered for.

Don’t forget to check the small print to look for any exclusions that might apply.

If you are paying for a bank account, make sure you’re making use of the perks it offers – if you’re not, it might make more sense to switch to a free account.

Switch car insurance early

According to Compare the Market, you can save up to £306 by switching your car insurance policy early.

Leaving it to renew means you could be throwing cash away – insurers tend to offer you a higher price if you’ve left it until the last minute.

The best time to switch to a new deal is around 20 days before your existing policy ends, the research found.

Before you switch, make sure your new policy will include all the cover that you need.

Alex said: “Drivers could be missing out on significant savings by not switching their insurance policy at the optimum time.”

“Many people leave it until the last minute to take out or renew a policy, but our research shows the cost of car insurance can be £306 cheaper on average by switching 20 days before the end of your policy compared to the day it automatically renews.”

Even if you’re covered you might sometimes find it hard to get a pay out – we explain what your consumer rights are.

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A simple tweak to how you apply for car insurance could save you hundreds of pounds.

Make sure you know why your policy could be cancelled and how to avoid it.

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