Every now and again you come up with a good idea.
I'm lucky that my business is about cars, and cars are my passion. I sell motor insurance, not the standard stuff, more like all the insurance that you don't get from mainstream motor insurers.
Some are niche products for enthusiasts like me (like tyre insurance - you need that if you have a classic sports car with an appetite for expensive rubber). Others are more general like GAP insurance. For those of you who are not insurance geeks, GAP is useful if your car is written off. It covers the difference between your standard insurers' payment in the event of total loss and any outstanding finance payments. You can also get a policy which will ensure you can replace your car as well as pay off outstanding payments. It's useful when your car's value - as assessed by your vehicle insurer - is less than outstanding finance or the amount you'd need to replace the car.
Anyway, back to my great idea. GAP insurance has come in for a lot of flack lately. Mainly because it's often sold at dealerships. You choose your perfect motor, test drive it, fall in love and demand the keys. Not so fast, my friend, there's at least an inch of paperwork to get through and two salesmen standing over you like exam invigilators to make sure you tick every box, dot every i and cross every t.
At this point, you're offered all sorts of extras. GAP insurance sounds great - no one likes the idea of writing off their car, and even less so being left still paying the outstanding finance (which is usually quite a bit more than the value of the car). It's an easy exercise to tick the box and buy it from the dealer.
However, that may not be the smartest move financially. Dealer 'add-on' GAP insurance was recently highlighted by the Financial Conduct Authority as frequently poor value for money. We kind of knew that already- our GAP insurance is sold online and retails at upto 75% less than dealer sold GAP insurance - but it's nice to know that the FCA is on the case.
The good idea? Well, we're offering anyone a 14 day complimentary GAP policy on their new car, so that they can drive it off the forecourt without worrying and really research the market. Obviously, as an insurance broker, I'm pretty confident new car buyers won't find anything better than our own policies (but there's no obligation so I reckon this will be thoroughly tested).
After a few months of working with our underwriter, website coding and much thought, I'm really proud to be able to launch an industry first today. Direct Gap Complimentary Drive Away GAP cover. Snappy eh? Right, I can get back to driving my car now.
By Beate Kubitz at 28 Oct 2014, 00:00 AM