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TD Insurance report reveals many Ontarians misled by insurance myths
- Part two of the TD Insurance 2011 State of Insurance Report shows Ontarians rely on friends and Internet for insurance advice; popular myths revealed -
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TORONTO, Aug. 9, 2011 /CNW/ - The majority of Ontarians are putting themselves, their families and their assets at risk by relying on the 'rumour mill' of friends, family and online searches to make important decisions about their insurance needs.
A new report by TD Insurance has found that when it comes to making significant decisions regarding insurance products and services, 63% of Ontarians don't go to an insurance provider, but instead ask their friends, family or colleagues for advice (25%), rely on searching the Internet (33%), or simply go with their gut (4%).
"Doing your own research online and asking friends for advice about insurance is certainly a good starting point, but if you rely solely on these sources then you may encounter some issues down the track," says Henry Blumenthal, Vice President & Chief Underwriter, TD Insurance. "A reliable source can clarify any mistruths and ensure you understand your coverage to avoid any costly headaches in the event that something unexpected happens."
Part two of the TD Insurance 2011 State of Insurance Report delves into Canadians' knowledge of popular insurance products. Blumenthal and TD Insurance Vice President Dave Minor provide their commentary on the report's key findings, unveiling the insurance urban legends and providing advice on how Ontarians can better protect the things that matter to them:
Myth: Red cars are more expensive to insure
Ontarians were some of the least savvy in the country when it comes to auto insurance urban legends. In fact, they were among the most likely in the country to think auto insurance premiums are more expensive for a red (42% versus 29% nationally) or two-door (60% versus 54% nationally) car. Nearly a quarter (24%) think it's more expensive to insure a newer car than an older one, and 43% think that if you're in an auto accident your insurance rates won't go up if you don't file a claim. None of these statements are true.
"Most people may not know it, but the insurance industry is colour-blind. It doesn't matter if your car is blue, red, striped or chequered, your insurance rate for that make, model, and age of the vehicle will be the same," says Blumenthal. "There are so many factors that make up the formula for auto insurance premiums. For example, a mom who lives in the city centre and drives to work each day may actually be more expensive to insure than a 28-year-old man who lives in a suburb and catches the bus to work."
Myth: If you file a claim through home insurance for stolen or damaged items due to fire or water damage, you will be reimbursed for replacing the items in your home at today's prices
Fifty-nine percent of Ontarians wrongly believe they will be reimbursed at today's prices if they file a home insurance claim for stolen or damaged items.
"A standard home policy only covers you for the value of your contents, less depreciation. For example, if you purchased a television five years ago for $500, you might only get $100 for it if it were destroyed in a fire even if it costs $600 to replace that same TV today," says Blumenthal. "If you want a higher form of protection you should choose to add the Replacement Value option to your contents coverage, which will ensure the contents of your home are insured for the amount it costs to replace them today."
Myth: You only need travel insurance if you're vacationing outside of Canada
Twenty-eight percent of Ontarians think that you only need travel insurance if you travel outside of Canada, and more than half (57%) have travelled outside of their home province without it.
"Getting sick or injured while on vacation isn't only bad timing, it's very expensive. Provincial medical coverage won't provide comprehensive coverage if you're outside of your home province, so it's important that you ensure you're covered even when you're travelling domestically," says Minor. "And when it comes to international travel, many Canadians don't realize that the average out-of-country in-hospital bill can cost up to $10,000 per day, and the average emergency room visit is $1,000."
Top features Ontarian travellers shouldn't budge on in their travel insurance policies include 24/7 assistance, more than $1 million of emergency medical coverage, and expense coverage if you need to be flown home for medical care.
To test your knowledge on insurance coverage, complete the TD Insurance Urban Legends Quiz:
TD INSURANCE - INSURANCE MYTHS QUIZ
True or False?
Getting a parking ticket means your insurance rates will go up
False: If that was the case, we'd all be singing the blues. Parking tickets do not count against your driving record or your insurance.
Installing a home security system can reduce your home insurance premiums
True: Believe it or not some upgrades to your home, like taking extra security measures, can actually decrease your premiums.
Life insurance is only useful for people who have children
False: Life insurance should be an integral part of everyone's financial planning, and at minimum should cover funeral costs. One of the advantages of thinking about it sooner is that it can be more affordable since premiums are based on life expectancy which naturally decreases over time.
If you're in a car accident but don't file a claim, your insurance
premiums won't go up
False: If your insurance company finds out you were in an accident, they can raise your rates whether you made a claim or not. You may not have told your insurance provider about the accident, but the other person in the collision may be filing a claim.
You may be liable if a contractor is injured while working on your property
True: It is your responsibility to ensure that workers on your property are covered. If they aren't, you may be held liable and have to deal with a very costly settlement.
About the TD Insurance 2011 State of Insurance Report
TD Insurance commissioned Environics Research Group to conduct a custom online survey of 1,000 Canadian adults, including 250 Ontario residents. Results were collected between March 5 - 13th, 2011.
About TD Insurance
TD Bank Group's insurance companies and operations carry on business under the TD Insurance brand. TD Insurance offers a wide range of products to help protect clients from the 'accidents of life' including credit protection, life, health, travel, home and auto insurance. With more than three million clients, TD Insurance authorized products and services are available through a network of more than 1,000 TD Canada Trust branches, the Internet and telephone. The TD Insurance brands include TD Insurance Credit Protection and TD Insurance Life and Health, which are the number one provider of critical illness insurance and direct life and health premium origination in Canada. And through its TD Insurance Meloche Monnex and TD Insurance Home and Auto brands, TD Insurance is the largest direct-response insurance group in the country. For more information, visit www.tdinsurance.com.
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