divorcingjack

CRL underwriter declared bankrupt

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So, just got an email through from my warranty provider CRL to say that their insurance underwriter has gone bust :( 

 

They are currently trying to source alternative cover for those who have a 10 year structural warranty, and have assured me there's nothing to worry about. Thankfully I paid the premium on credit card, so I can claim back if necessary, and we also won't be in a position to take a mortgage out for a few months - hopefully it should all have settled down by then. 

 

They have recommended that anyone who is going to need to mortgage within the next few weeks to get in touch with them to discuss a way forward. 

 

 

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Posted (edited)

I am in the same position and so is someone else i know. The original price I paid for my CRL Structural warranty was £3,700. CRL have offered a new policy for closer to £5,000. Good tip on the Credit Card payment above...i have a feeling i also paid on Credit Card...UPDATE: I did pay for it with Barclaycard. They are sending me some forms so they can investigate this.

 

L

Edited by Leedub
Updated info
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I just got that email yesterday too - I was shocked and extremely unamused that they expect me to fund a new policy! I looked at my original policy documents and actually only £700 of the £2400 I paid to CRL is classified as "premium" - the remainder appears to be their own internal charges including inspection fees etc. If they are to provide a new policy, I would certainly not be paying any of these and would expect these services to be transferred across. 

 

When you claim the money back from barclaycard (before you send the forms in), have the alternative warranty fully in place because you can also claim for consequential costs - I would hope this would include the provision of a replacement policy. I am awaiting a response from CRL, but have filled out the danish compensation form already for the refund of premium. You might have to do that as the credit card company will ask whether you have investigated other routes of getting your money back. I have had to claim for a window from Barclaycard last year and I have to say they were very helpful as long as you have all the details and documentation in place and can explain the circumstances fully. 

 

I'll post back on this thread if I get any update. 

 

What a pain in the arse!! 

 

 

 

 

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Shouldn’t CRL just transfer your policy to another underwriter at no cost to you, what is the FSAs position on this?

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2 minutes ago, Triassic said:

Shouldn’t CRL just transfer your policy to another underwriter at no cost to you, what is the FSAs position on this?

 

I would certainly open an enquiry with the FCA. 

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3 hours ago, newhome said:

 

I would certainly open an enquiry with the FCA. 

As a consumer and paying my insurance tax I expect to be protected against this kind of situation.

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My insurance is with them too. Paid cash. Not even had an email

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Triassic said:

Shouldn’t CRL just transfer your policy to another underwriter at no cost to you, what is the FSAs position on this?

 

This is what seems to happens in normal circumstances but not in this one for some reason. Maybe brokers can insure against this kind of thing and CRL didn't? I've not fully tooled up on this yet having only got the email a few days ago. Others seems to have been notified much sooner in May. First I heard from CRL officially was 13th July 2018. I would be interested to hear from anyone else who only heard about this on ~13th July 2018

 

L

PS I was lwoody on ebuild. I only realised this was new ebuild after I registered.

Edited by Leedub

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7 minutes ago, Leedub said:

As a consumer and paying my insurance tax I expect to be protected against this kind of situation.

 

That’s why you should raise an enquiry with the FCA as companies regulated by them are governed by strict conduct rules. 

 

If you don’t get any joy with that raise a formal complaint with CRL. If that doesn’t bring you any joy complain to the Financial Ombudsman. You normally have to go thorough a company’s complaints process before the ombudsman will intervene. 

 

It sounds like you should have a good case in my view. 

 

And welcome by the way. Just wish it was in happier circumstances. 

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28 minutes ago, Hecateh said:

My insurance is with them too. Paid cash. Not even had an email

 

When you say you paid cash, presumably it was a cheque or bank transfer rather than cash and you are in receipt of the policy but haven't heard about any issues as yet? 

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Here are some more links that provide some information on the current state of affairs. It seems that some mortgage companies are not accepting a CRL warranty so now is possibly the time to get a refund / compensation if you can and go with another provider it seems. 

 

https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5827521

 

https://www.self-build.co.uk/alpha-insurance-liquidation-structural-warranty-advice/

 

 

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32 minutes ago, newhome said:

 

When you say you paid cash, presumably it was a cheque or bank transfer rather than cash and you are in receipt of the policy but haven't heard about any issues as yet? 

Yeah - bank transfer.  Only got it because the loan company insisted.  They made one visit and haven't seen or heard from them since.  

 

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1 minute ago, Hecateh said:

Yeah - bank transfer.  Only got it because the loan company insisted.  They made one visit and haven't seen or heard from them since.  

 

What's worse is that the loan company then accepted my statement that it was in place but no evidence until the end so i needn't have bothered anyway. Another 2.4k down the drain

 

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Check who yours is underwritten by. It's Alpha Insurance who have gone bust not CRL. See if you can get a refund. If you can that would appear to be a good result if you don't actually need the warranty but you will probably need one if you need to remortgage within 10 years of completion. 

 

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8 hours ago, Hecateh said:

What's worse is that the loan company then accepted my statement that it was in place but no evidence until the end so i needn't have bothered anyway. Another 2.4k down the drain

 

I’d also lodge a formal complaint with the loan company?

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Just found this statement from Alpha -

 

The firm said it has ceased all underwriting of new business, including renewals. A day after the decision, Alpha Insurance general assembly also placed the company into solvent liquidation.

“This means that Alpha Insurance from this date will be in run-off,” it said. “The company is solvent, and we, therefore, expect that all present and future obligations will be honoured.”

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23 hours ago, divorcingjack said:

I just got that email yesterday too - I was shocked and extremely unamused that they expect me to fund a new policy! I looked at my original policy documents and actually only £700 of the £2400 I paid to CRL is classified as "premium" - the remainder appears to be their own internal charges including inspection fees etc. If they are to provide a new policy, I would certainly not be paying any of these and would expect these services to be transferred across. 

 

 

You purchased a complex financial product from CRL and one of their sub contractors (Alpha) is in trouble. Since CRL is still trading can you not tell them to sort out their own problems at zero cost to you.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Triassic said:

I’d also lodge a formal complaint with the loan company?

 

I wouldn’t do that as @Hecateh could potentially get all or most of her money back with them being none the wiser. If she complains they won’t care that Alpha has gone bust and may require her to source another policy. 

 

That’s a bold statement for Alpha to make as warranty policies will provide cover for 10 years from completion. If a house being built now takes 5 years to finish that’s potentially a 15 year liability. 

Edited by newhome

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Thanks for all your replies @newhome - this is looking like a right disaster area. The fact that mortgage companies are now not accepting CRL warranties means that even if they offer to provide cover at no cost to me (unlikely!), it looks like that won't work. 

 

So - is the best plan to try and claim through the credit card company for consequential losses and source a new policy? Any recommendations, as my choice of CRL was pretty disastrous this time :( House is at 2nd fix stage, although is has already been inspected by CRL twice - could another company use those reports? It is an insulated foundation, MBC timber frame build. CRL were one of the few providers that didn't have a problem with the method of construction. 

 

AND our bloody skylights didn't arrive this morning and they have now confessed that they haven't even been MADE, despite promising me that they were on the lorry. Bloody bunch of lying bastards. 

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Got to say that Sennocke may be worth a call to. They will know that Alpha and CPL are in trouble and have probably got packages ready to put in place. They are also very easy to deal with and it’s real people you talk to...

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Mine is with Buildzone who seem to be pretty established in the market. 

 

The warranties that a lender will accept are defined by the lender but here is the list from the Council of Mortgage lenders. They have now been integrated into UK Finance but I couldn’t see the list on that website. Note that the link is for England and Wales and you will need to change the selection to get another home nation. I’d look for one that is widely accepted by most lenders. The CRL issue may settle down if they find a new insurer but I hope they don’t select one that is rated poor again. There is a degree of risk with any policy that is expected to run for a long duration as no one can predict the future but maybe check the provider fully this time on a once bitten basis. 

 

https://www.cml.org.uk/lenders-handbook/englandandwales/question-list/1913/

 

The issue you have is that being so far through the build a new policy may cost a lot more. I would get some quotes before making a knee jerk decision.

 

Do you actually need the policy? If you don’t need it to release funds and aren’t planning on moving for a while you may be better crossing that bridge when you come to sell if the CRL one doesn’t work out. 

 

There was a fairly recent discussion on warranties here:

 

 

 

 

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10 hours ago, PeterW said:

Got to say that Sennocke may be worth a call to.

Just had a quote from those guys, ~£4,500, they are aware of the CRL/Alpha situation...Sennocke are who you get when you go through Buildzone/SelfBuild Zone. 

 

I initiated a dispute with Barclaycard over this payment so let's see what they come back with. They were very helpful.

 

On the Alpha Insurance websiteto claim the premium back it says (https://alphagroup.dk/1647-2/):

 

"Generally the Danish Guarantee Fund does not cover premium refunds on the following insurance types:

  • British taxi insurances
  • British insurances on buildings"

 

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