Saturday 16 December 2017

Time to buy your Travel & Car Hire Excess insurance for Christmas / New Year holidays

Santa and the team will be out delivering the week after next and many people will be returning to Ireland for Christmas. The car hire business will be exceptionally busy as normal, so do remember that if you are hiring a car you will need to take out Car Rental Excess Waiver Insurance.

This can be a costly little number if you buy it from one of those car hire companies you are renting the car from, so as you have planned that Christmas trip, also plan ahead and buy some excess insurance from an independent like Carhireexcess from Blue Insurances

Naturally, if you are planning an after Christmas break and are off to find some "winter sun", or go skiing for example and renting a car, then again make your car rental excess insurance arrangements in advance and save money as car hire providers do normally charge a lot for this type of insurance product.

Don't forget your travel insurance either. You need to arrange this well before you set off on your holiday. Blue Insurances have a variety of products -  - - - and these are available for residents in ROI and Northern Ireland Go to for more information

Have a great Christmas and New Year 2018

Wednesday 19 July 2017

Fantastic Window displays at Estate Agents in Dublin 9

To look at the website in my opinion the image on the left that is on their home page does not do them justice for their fantastic window displays.
They are situated on the N1 Drumcondra Road, Drumcondra in Dublin 9 and cannot be missed by anyone going down that road.
It is better if you are walking of course and I have been walking past with the dog ever since they opened and cannot remember who occupied the building before.  
They had a fantastic display of tea cups and tea pots in 2016 and according to The Irish Times "scooped a gong for Best Shopfront in Dublin City Council’s 2016 annual awards. It’s the first time an estate agency has won the prize which isn’t surprising given the rather mundane nature of the most agency’s displays. MoveHome won the award for its “drop in for a cuppa” themed window. The display consisted of 250 tea cups, recycled from houses the company sold throughout this year, with 20 novelty teapots in the shape of houses and cottages"
Unfortunately I never took out my phone to take a picture but you can see this at The Irish Times website here.

I did however capture this Halloween window from 2016.

Then there was Easter 2017 (left)

Finally below is this very clever display from June / July 17 with pots of paint with pictures of property for sale on them inviting purchasers to "put their own touch on of the houses".

As someone involved with Letting and Estate Agency for many years, I do find this way of creating a window display very good.

It is such a shame that they don't show some of these "works of art" on their website.  I look forward to seeing more as I walk by.

Sunday 25 June 2017

Car hire and excess insurance in the Irish Times June 17th News

Car hire costs and the benefits of taking out car hire excess waiver insurance from an independent provider are very much in the news in the last week.

The Irish Times travel section of June 17th, featured a report by Joan Scales "Travel advice on....Pitfalls of car rental"

She reported that Car rental can be one of the most frustrating elements of any holiday. She had recently booked a car in Spain and the price for 10 days hire with a Nissan Juke was only €33.92. She added on the items in the Goldcar list it suddenly cost €313.92!

She wrote that Goldcar would block a deposit of €1,400 if she provided her own excess insurance, their price was €59.50 which of course costs the same as an annual policy from an independent insurance company.

So the main advice is when hiring a car take out car hire excess waiver insurance from an independent insurance provider.
On the site There is a great choice - Questor,, insurance4carhire, Worldwide insure, Protect Your Bubble, iCarhireinsurance, insurecarhire plus companies offering Van hire excess, motorhome excess and minibus hire excess insurance and car club insurance.

Thursday 25 May 2017

Car hire without the excess worry was the headline

I was reading the Irish Independent this morning - 25th May 2017 and came across an article by Sinead Ryan under the "Consumer Guide".

Car hire without the excess worry.   That is something we all want and it was only a couple of weeks ago I rented a car in Sicily and turned down the car hire company's rather expensive cover as I already had an annual policy.

Well we are now heading for the summer holidays, bank holidays and half term breaks. So Sinead has been looking at the car hire itself and the 'emergence of the excess insurance.' This is the cover she explains that pays for the first part of every claim the driver normally pays in the event of an accident and which she says in Europe van be "wateringly excessive"

She points out that car hire staff "are paid hefty commission to up sell products and issue dire warnings about not having this.

In her article she got quotes from one of the advertisers at and - Ciaran Mulligan of Blue Insurance that has the brand

Ciaran explained that "car hire insurance covers you for accidents (usually termed Collision Damage Waiver) and theft (Loss Damager waiver), unfortunately, you may have also have to pay a large excess if the hired car is damaged or stolen. Car Hire Excess is a reimbursement policy which is designed to help you avoid these large excess costs"

He went on to say" You can get ripped off at the car rental desk, routinely charged €20 to €25 a day whereas an Irish policy in advance will only be €3 to €5 a day. So it is best to buy before you fly".

The article runs through costings from four other companies and goes on to offer some tips when hiring a car.

One of these is that most rental firms demand a credit card not a debit card. In Sicily my Irish debit card was not acceptable and had to use a sterling credit card which adds to charges as there are currency transactions. As I did not buy the car hire company's product they had the right top debit my card between €1,200 to €1,600 so you do need to make sure you have sufficient credit as quite often car hire companies take that money as soon as you hire and return it when you bring the car back....undamaged. So if you are using that credit card for hotel and other expenses on your holiday, make you have a sufficient credit limit.

One item that was not mentioned in the article was about extra equipment charges, child seats, Sat Navs etc. We took our Sat Nav with us. We did not want to rent one and we know how or "Agnes" works!  

When I rented the car I did what the Irish Independent article advises - check the fuel policy. You can normally do this before you book. If you are hiring on a pick up full, return empty that is no good if you are not travelling far and you return it nearly full. It is a way some car hire companies make additional income so do take care.    

Thursday 8 September 2016

Northern Ireland TDS launches new training academy

TDS Northern Ireland one of the Northern Irish deposit protection schemes which is based in Belfast is launching a new training academy for landlords, letting agents and other property professionals.

This three part programme will equip delegates with knowledge on the legal aspects of tenancy deposit protection as well as best practise management with the final course focusing on dispute resolution.

The training will count towards CPD - Continuous Professional Development for professional bodies like ARLA. It will give delegates access to expert and practical advice from senior colleagues of TDS Northern Ireland.

Ben Beadle who is Managing Director of TDS Northern Ireland said "Our new Academy will provide a unique collection of courses for property professionals which will mean that tenants are in the very best of hands"

He went on to say "The training is open to all landlords, letting agents and property professionals with a preferential rate for TDS Northern Ireland members"

Source: The Negotiator

Wednesday 27 May 2015

Family Home or Investment opportunity for Sale in Drumcondra, Dublin 9 Revisited

On the 11th February this was published on the Irish Property Insurance + Blog site. At the time it had gone on the market at a guide price of €595,000 (Original article here)

As a result of the Central Bank's  new lending regulations brought in during the early part of 2015, houses do not appear to have been selling for prices paid in 2014.

The owners are being very realistic now about the market and this excellent family home in Drumcondra, North Dublin. They have instructed the agents  Kelly Bradshaw Dalton to advise anyone who has seen it and really liked it in the last few months who might have been able to afford a higher price under old lending regulations in 2014, that the owners would consider an offer of €510,000 for a quick sale.

This house has great potential for expansion to a 5 bedroom residence as other similar properties have been transformed in that road that runs parallel with Griffith Avenue.

For more information go to Kelly Bradshaw Dalton’s website at

Or give them a call on (01) 804 0500

Excess car hire insurance article appearing in The Herald this week

The spring bank holiday is just around the corner and on Monday this week The published an article on hiring a car - "Consumer Champion: Drive a harder bargain on extras when hiring a car for holidays"

The article says "One of the biggest culprits is the excess. In Ireland we’re used to our car insurance policies having an excess of around €250 – this is the first bit of any claim that you have to pay. However, on hire cars the excess is normally anywhere between €600 to €2,000 making even a simple tip or scratch monumentally expensive"

I know that last week hiring a car in Dublin and taking out car hire excess insurance from an independent provider provision was made on my credit card for a debit of €1,350 if there was an accident. I would then have had to provide that money till the insurance company providing the excess waiver policy stepped in. Had I purchased the more expensive insurance the car hire company wanted to sell me (so they gained a good commission) I would not have had have the reserve available from my credit card.

The article emphasises exactly what type of situation can occur and go onto to say  "For instance, well known companies like Hertz and Avis charge hundreds for this cover at the hire desk, but buying it before you go can save., for example, sells Excess Cover starting at €2.99 per day in Ireland, so a little planning goes a long way".  You can find out more about Carhireexesscom here.

The article goes on to remind people hiring a car that taking their own Sat Navs and the fuel policy, It is essential to check this out when you make a booking and although some firms might be cheaper than others, the cheaper car hire companies might have a pick up policy with a full tank (of expensive fuel) and return it empty. That is not a lot of good if you are not driving far. Last week in four days of driving the car in theory was still over a quarter full. It was much more economic to fill it up and get a full fuel refund.

See the full Herald article here  

Looking for Travel Insurance for that holiday - Find out more Here

Visiting your holiday home over the holidays and looking for property insurance for holiday homes? Find out more here