Press release

Insurance gap among 2.7 million Mid-Net-Worth households

  • Majority of 'Mid-Net-Worth' households on (sub) standard policies
  • As UK wealth has grown, millions of mass affluent homeowners under-insure because they don't consider themselves 'wealthy'
  • LV= reveals home items that signify mass affluence - including AGA cookers, vinyl collections and kids play rooms

More than 3.5 million households are now 'mid net worth' [1] yet the vast majority underinsure because they don't consider themselves 'wealthy'.

According to LV= Broker - who this month announced a range of enhancements to its ABC cover (specifically for those covering £75,000 of contents or more) - a significant majority of mass affluent households (79%) don't take out appropriate insurance, despite having above-average household income and a range of luxury items in their properties.

While average household income has doubled over the last 20 years [2], creating swathes of new affluent households, half (49%) of mid-net-worth homeowners don't consider themselves wealthy and as a result retain standard policies instead of trading up. This means approximately 2.7 million households who should have more premium policies instead choose standard cover. [3]

As part of the study by the insurer, many luxury items have been identified as indicative of a mid-net-worth home (appearing in at least 10% of them) - a list including 'nutrient extractors', wine fridges and walk-in wardrobes (full lists below).

The study also looked at the items they aspire to own, including pizza ovens, grand pianos and rainforest showers.

Michael Lawrence, Personal Lines Director at LV= Broker said:

"Brokers face a challenge in that many of their customers are well-off and require premium products, but these people don't often feel wealthy so might not opt for classic 'premium' products. Brokers need a more diverse product offering that combines solid cover at a competitive rate and we're confident that ABC now does this even better than before."

Premium items indicative of mid-net-worth households (Owned by 10%+ MNW households)

  1. Home office (37%)
  2. Vinyl collections (18%)
  3. Limited edition art (18%)
  4. A kids play room (13%)
  5. Music delivery system, e.g. Sonos (13%)
  6. Under-floor heating (13%)
  7. Nutrient extractor, e.g. Nutri-Bullet (12%)
  8. Wine fridge (12%)
  9. Walk in wardrobe (11%)
  10. Luxury paint / wall paper, e.g. Farrow & Ball paint (10%)
  11. Range cooker, e.g. AGA or Rangemaster (10%)

Top 10 items that mass affluent homeowners are impressed by / aspire to own

  1. Grand Piano (43%)
  2. Games room (33%)
  3. Walk in wardrobe (33%)
  4. Under-floor heating (30%)
  5. AGA / range cooker (28%)
  6. Limited edition art (25%)
  7. A wet room (24%)
  8. Pizza oven (24%)
  9. 3D projector (24%)
  10. Rainforest shower (23%)


Notes to editors: 

LV= commissioned ICM Research to conduct bespoke research among a sample of 1,000 mid-net-worth households (HH income £57k+). Surveys were conducted across the UK in January 2016.

  1. 13% of households are mass affluent (50% above average HH income, equivalent to HH income of 57k+). There are 26.7m households. 13% x 26.7m = 3.471m. Approx. 3.5m.
  2. Average household income has doubled over the last 20 years (Source: ONS, HH Income 2002 to 2012)
  3. Of the 3.471m MNW households, 79% have standard insurance policies (i.e. not those designed for wealthier households), equivalent to 2.74m households.

About LV=

LV= employs over 6,000 people and serves over 5.8 million customers with a range of financial products. We are the UK's largest friendly society and a leading financial mutual.

When we started in 1843 our goal was to give financial security to more than just a privileged few and for many decades we were most commonly associated with providing a method of saving to people of modest means. Today we follow a similar purpose, helping people to protect and provide for the things they love, although on a much larger scale and through a wide range of financial services including insurance, investment and retirement products.

We are currently the UK's number one brand for Insurance and Investments, according to the 2015 YouGov Brand Index Buzz Rankings.

We offer our services direct to consumers, as well as through IFAs and brokers, and through strategic partnerships with organisations such as ASDA, Nationwide Building Society and a range of trade unions.

Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. LVFS is a member of the ABI, the AFM and ILAG. Registered address: County Gates, Bournemouth BH1 2NF.
Lloyd Purnell
Senior Press Officer (General Insurance)
020 7634 4433
07500 835885