Pet insurance can really be a lifesaver if you’re caught off-guard and your beloved furry friend suffers an accident or illness. It may seem controversial, but veterinary practices, just like all private businesses, must charge for services rendered in order to pay their overheads and keep on providing a quality service for pets and their owners.
In the current economic climate, it can feel like cost of living just keeps rising. An unexpected veterinary bill can really throw a spanner in the works. Hence why it’s so important to make sure that your pet is adequately insured. That said, even pet insurance can sometimes feel overwhelming to account for in the monthly or yearly budget; with most pet owners noticing an increase in their premiums over time.
Pet insurance policies
When you take out a pet insurance policy, it’s highly recommended to do your research into the many and varied companies, and their policy options, as well as thoroughly reading through all the fine print. It’s easy to get drawn in by an attractively low premium in bold letters and not delve into the details. Unfortunately, however, this creates problems further down the line with the policy not covering certain conditions, excluding cover for illness already claimed for during a set time-frame, having a fees cap or other restrictions that can constrain the pet’s cover significantly. The bottom line here is that no two companies are the same; each has their own, very individual, set of policies and ways of conducting their business.
Given that pet insurance companies are individual businesses, each has its own protocol for setting their individual policy premiums. This includes any change to the price of a pet policy over the course of their cover. Although there is a general trend for your monthly or annual premium to rise each year; this isn’t an organised act amongst insurance brokers.
Naturally, there is some increase in line with national averages and inflation, as with most businesses. However, further price increases are employed by the insurance broker to offset the general increased risk of disease or illness as your pet ages. As a basic example, with advancing age your pet is more likely to suffer from clinically significant dental disease and is more likely to suffer with ailments such as arthritis. That said, there are other things that affect your premium, not just your pet’s age, as each year goes by. As ever, it’s important to refer back to your policy and comb through any details of its cover that may explain premium increases.
Policy fine print
Here we end up circling back to the beginning, to reiterate why it’s so important to read through the policy fine print. Your premiums can indeed end up going higher than anticipated as a result of previous claims and, depending on whether your pet has an annual or lifetime policy, it may also mean exclusions on top.
Do plenty of research when taking out an insurance policy for your pet. Not only to make sure it’s right for you at the present time; but also to ensure that it’ll serve you in the future, in the face of general price increases. And in the case of any claims being made and how these could impact both the insurance cover and the amount you pay each month or year.