Tick off your household insurance this festive season

Sunblock? Tick. Beach umbrella? Tick. Treats for the family? Tick. But have you checked your insurance policy as part of your festive season preparation? ooba, South Africa’s largest bond originator, shares vital tips that could save you insurance headaches this holiday. 

The festive season is one of the most expensive periods of the year. If you do not ensure that you have the correct insurance cover in place, or that your monthly premiums are paid up, you could be left destitute and out of pocket during an unforeseen event, as the insurers have the right to decline a claim. While the extra paperwork may not be high on your festive priority list, it is an important precaution, as no one likes coming home to a burst geyser, or a damaged property as a result of bad renters.
This is the view of Craig Young, managing executive for oobainsure, who says that homeowners should take care not to underinsure their properties and contents. 
“Where a claim occurs and the property and or its contents are not insured correctly the insurer will apply ‘average’ to the claim, which is based on what they believe to be the true replacement cost of the property at the time of the claim.  This means that if you are under insured, you could end up having to pay for a significant portion of the claimed value yourself.”
Before going on holiday, he advises that you ensure that your house insurance premium is paid and that you are familiar with your policy so that you have sufficient cover in place, whether for accidents or theft.
“If you are going away for an extended period of time, leave a spare set of keys with a trusted person, such as a family member or neighbour, with your contact details. They can assist you to switch on lights, feed pets, clear post boxes, water plants and keep the lawn cut while you’re away. In case of an emergency such as a burst geyser, power failure or resetting your alarm, that person can be there to assist.”

If renting out your property during the festive period, Young says that there is the genuine chance of damage to the house or its contents, which may only be discoverable upon your return. In addition, your risk profile increases as soon as the property starts earning income, and this could affect your insurance.
“As a property owner, ensure that you have sufficient Liability cover, as well as cover for accidental breakage. Obtain a healthy deposit from the renter as well as all of their personal details. Most importantly, inform your insurance company that you will be renting out your property. The insurer will review the policy for the duration of the tenant’s stay and underwrite the risk appropriately,” he says.
To be on the safe side, take the necessary precautions before handing over the keys to renters, such as locking away valuables, securing the mains box outside your property and making sure that vehicles left behind are immobilized and keys are hidden away.
Below Young explains what you should make sure you are covered for before the festive season starts, depending on whether you are going away, if you are entertaining at home, or renting out your home:

Buildings insurance: This is one of the most important policies you will purchase. It covers the structure of your home and its permanent fixtures and fittings in case of unexpected events, such as fire, floods and lightning. If your geyser bursts, whether you are at home or away, this policy will cover the costs of repair and damages. 
Content insurance: Valuable assets inside your home, such as TVs, HiFis, DVD machines and computers are covered in the event of theft, water or fire damage. Do a realistic valuation when you request an insurance quote because if you under-value the contents, there will be a shortfall in your pay-out.
Liability insurance: If your friends or family are visiting or you are entertaining at home and an unforeseen incident occurs, this type of cover indemnifies you up to the amount insured, provided you are found legally liable in a South African court of law.
He also recommends additional cover such as Power Surge which covers the fridge, freezer and other electrical items such as electric gate motors and electric fencing while you are away.
“Lastly, if you are outsourcing services such as entertainment, catering, waiting staff or cleaning, it is crucial that homeowners take the time to ensure that the supplier is licensed and insured. If possible, use a service provider that has the required workers’ compensation insurance that covers their staff during an event, so that you don’t have to worry about this responsibility,” concludes Young.

  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
Characters remaining

    Latest Property News
    • 20 Mar 2018
      Located close to the fast growing Fourways precinct, Dainfern continues to attract local and international interest from buyers seeking a secure lifestyle with affordable entry price of approximately R3 million.
    • 20 Mar 2018
      Property owners in the Durban CBD are addressing the affordability challenge that faces many prospective tenants in their area – and reconfiguring the inner city rental market in the process.
    • 20 Mar 2018
      One of the most misunderstood concepts in the process of selling a property is an exclusive or sole mandate.
    • 19 Mar 2018
      If a landlord opts to use a managing agent for the rental of his or her property, the inspection process can be easier as the agent is not emotionally involved and will certainly have concluded an in-depth inspection report in the interests of all parties.
    • 19 Mar 2018
      We all wish we could have the cheat sheet for selling a property – a simple Ctrl+Shift+C code that will magically secure an offer on your home in an instant. Though it is not possible to provide you with this cheat code (sadly, reality does not come with such perks), it is possible to provide you with a list of the most common blunders some of your neighbours have committed in their efforts to sell their homes
    • 19 Mar 2018
      Although property technology is now widely accepted as an established trend, especially in the international real estate arena, the industry has been cautious to advance and smaller markets like South Africa are still hesitantly dipping their toes in the water.
    • 16 Mar 2018
      Strange as it may seem, there is a stock shortage looming now in the luxury sector of the Johannesburg property market, because astute buyers have for the past few months been hurrying to snap up high-end homes being offered at excellent prices.
    • 16 Mar 2018
      No one likes having to claim but having insurance for your household contents is vital, and at the start of a new financial year, homeowners either applying for new household insurance or revising their existing insurance should take a comprehensive inventory of their possessions and keep track of the total value.
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    Share this Page

    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    Connect with us