- Every homeowner should have buildings insurance as well as bond protection cover.
- Buildings insurance covers the structure of your home as well as all permanent fixtures and fittings.
- Bond protection insurance is a vital safety net if something happens that prevents you from paying your bond for any amount of time.
A new house brings with it a wealth of additional responsibilities, including practical matters such as maintenance and homeowner’s insurance. There is no point in making this type of investment without determining the cost of home insurance. You need to ensure that you have the right type of cover in case of crisis.
Get the right type of cover
“Every homeowner should have buildings insurance as well as bond protection cover,” says Craig Young, Managing Executive of Insurance at ooba, South Africa’s leading home loan comparison service and provider of property insurance cover.
What if there is a natural disaster?
Buildings insurance covers the structure of your home as well as all permanent fixtures and fittings. One of the benefits of home insurance is that you will be able to file a claim to cover damage resulting from unexpected events like fire, flood and lightning.
Protect yourself against unforeseen circumstances
You can secure buildings insurance cover from any accredited insurer, so it is a good idea to compare costs, benefits, reputation and service. “Buildings insurance protects your home from costly damage caused by unforeseen circumstances,” says Young. “For instance, if your geyser bursts, the insurance will cover its replacement and any consequential loss up to a certain amount such as the costs of replacing tiles and painting.”
What if you can’t pay your bond?
When you consider buying a property, look at all components of the required repayments to ensure you can afford them. The bank will grant you a bond in good faith, anticipating that you will maintain a steady income and remain in good health. “But what happens if something were to happen to you and your family to prevent you from paying your bond for any amount of time?” asks Young.
Get comprehensive cover
This is one of the positive features of home insurance. Bond protection insurance provides comprehensive cover in the event of death, disability, dread disease or loss of income. Your bank may not insist that you have this type of cover, but you should consider it anyway. “No one likes to think negatively, but if something bad does happen to you, it’s reassuring to know that you or your family won’t lose your home,” he says.
What it costs
When you’re buying a house, the last thing you want is extra expense but a small monthly payment now can spare you enormous financial strain later. “Insurance cover can be tailor made for your specific circumstances, taking into account your situation as well as the value of your house,” says Young.
Check the exclusions and excesses
For buildings insurance, the structure (what the building and the roof are made of) as well as the purpose (whether it serves as a holiday home or permanent residence) affects the cost of premiums.
This type of homeowner’s insurance will always be subject to exclusions and excesses, but will cover the bulk of your expenses if the loss forms part of an insured event.
Work out what you can afford
For bond protection insurance, your premiums are determined in line with various socio-economic factors that include monthly income, age, gender, smoker status and level of education. With a product like ooba’s Bond Protector no medical information is required and you can qualify for cover up to R1.5 million (pre-existing conditions may be excluded).