Our Ontario Insurer Q&A blog series aims to provide consumers with some important insights into how insurance works in this province, and should help to counter some of the myths and misconceptions floating around in the media these days. We’ve presented some challenging questions to the market leaders of Ontario’s insurance industry, and you just might be surprised by some of the responses.
In this installment of Ontario Insurer Q&A, CAA Insurance answers some of the current hot button questions regarding insurance in Ontario. Since 1974, the CAA Insurance has been providing Canadians a variety of insurance products, which now includes coverage for auto, atv, property, travel, life, health, and pets.
We’re always hungry for input from Ontario insurance companies. If you’d like to participate in the Ontario Insurer Q&A series, please drop us a line!
People claim in the media and on online forums that auto insurance in Ontario is making buckets of money for insurance companies and that the government guarantees profitability. Is this true?
Each insurance company in Ontario is unique from one another. From the types of insurance coverage to product offerings, no two companies are the same. While there have been efforts to lower auto insurance in Ontario, there are insurance companies that have filed for rate increases while others have decreased their rates for policyholders. While the government regulates the industry the viability of an insurance company rest within their own business model.
What do you feel are some challenges faced by insurance companies in Ontario today, and what could they change to make auto insurance “fairer” for the consumer?
Motorists should have the choice and control they are looking for when it comes to auto insurance.
We believe that insurance options should be designed based on individual lifestyles and the various stages of people’s lives. Drivers should be able to access the insurance they need, when they need it at a price and payment schedule that works for them.
CAA Insurance is excited to be launching the first in Canada payment program, CAA MyPace™, to Ontario drivers in July.
This program will empower motorists to monitor how much they drive and pay for auto insurance based on that mileage which allows motorists to manage their auto insurance premiums.
What are some of the most unique (unusual/memorable/quirky) home insurance claims that you have come across?
Outside of the standard fire, water, wind we did have a property claim against the child of one of our homeowners. An unfortunate accident, which occurred at a daycare, resulted in a minor injury to another child. Both children were fine and the claim was paid under the homeowner’s liability.
Another one comes to mind which highlights how our Associates go above and beyond to help our policyholders. One of our insureds experienced a large fire loss which resulting in 8 months of construction and rebuilding. Being torn from their home and not having options for a temporary residence outside of a hotel, our Insurance Agent spoke with them and provided them the use of her travel trailer as a temporary residence as their home was being repaired.
What would be your advice for a first time home insurance purchaser to set themselves up for a lifetime of great, worry-free insurance?
Take an inventory of everything you have from the big screen TV to the coffee cups you have in your kitchen cupboards. Approach the exercise as if you had to replace everything and start over, know what you need to begin again.
Understand your current needs and speak to a broker on coverages and options available and once your policy is in place, review and jot down any questions for your Broker. Know what’s in your policy so there are no surprises at the time of a loss.
Always be informed and with each renewal, have a conversation with your Broker on your current lifestyle to identify any gaps As you live in your home you gain wealth and more “stuff” and you want to make sure you’re covered for what matters.
Ask yourself the question “Do I have enough coverage to put me back to where I was before the loss.” If the answer is NO, time for a policy review with your Broker.
What advice can you give someone who needs to make a claim and is hoping for a simple and quick resolution?
Have all the details and information ready before making that first call.
Talk to an adjuster and have a list of any questions ready. Your adjuster should always be in touch and regularly be available to provide you up to the minute information on your claim.
Talk to your adjuster regularly to keep up to date on the process. You should, throughout the claims process, feel assisted and cared for.
What do you think will happen to auto insurance when self driving cars become the norm? Will owners still need insurance, or do you think the insurance will be provided by the car manufacturer?
We believe that technology will continue to advance cars and assisted driving.
Fully driving self driving vehicles is many years in the future. We believe assisted driving will begin to gain momentum in the future.
Car ownership and models around car ownership will continue to change. Used car sales are up, car sharing is more and more prevalent along with other modes of transportation will continue to be something consumers participate in and become more relevant in our society.
We need to continue to create products to meet the ever-changing lifestyles and consumer on demand needs.
With insurance rating data becoming more granular, do you think traditional broad rating factors such as gender and postal code will still be used as rating factors in the future?
The more customized the rate, the more appropriate it is for the consumer. We are focused on rating by individuals to ensure we are offering the right product to each consumer.
Cats or dogs?
Hands down, a dog. However, we did have a family cat that ended up being my responsibility. It was at that time my cat became my dog. I would take the cat for walks on a leash and taught her to fetch, better than any dog.
She was the biggest cat ever and happy and content as could be. The “dog life” was good to her
Special thanks to CAA Insurance for taking the time to participate in Michell & Whale’s Ontario Insurer Q&A.