Protect your property ahead of the holiday season - SAIA
Johannesburg - The festive season is fast approaching, with some of us planning our long-awaited holiday trips. Therefore, it is essential that consumers are aware of the potential risks that their properties may be exposed to, while they stay unoccupied for an extended period of time.
These could lead to unforeseen property damages or loss from events such as burst geysers, power surges or theft. “It is unfortunate that this time of the year tends to expose homeowners to opportunistic break-ins and in some instances delays on the reporting of incidents to the police and/or insurers”, say SAIA GM: Governance and Transformation, Mr. Themba Palagangwe.
Therefore, the South African Insurance Association (SAIA) would like to encourage consumers to adopt reasonable measures towards protecting their properties from unforeseen events during the festive season. These could include conducting the necessary maintenance checks on your property items like the geysers and electrical works and increasing the security measures during the holiday season. Below are a few tips to give you some peace of mind about your property protection, especially for those planning to travel during the holiday season:
- Inform your security company and/or neighbours that you will be traveling, so that they can be on the lookout for any unusual activities around your property.
- Ensure that all used electrical plugs and the geyser are switched off while you are away.
- Consider having a house sitter or installing a timer to switch lights off in the mornings and on in the evenings.
- Avoid loading your vehicle with your traveling luggage in full view of the street as you may not know who may be watching.
- Call the newspaper company and stop all newspaper deliveries to your home or ask your neighbours to collect all mail delivered while you are away.
- Keep your yard or grounds free of any equipment that may aid criminals, for instance ladders.
Consumers should also be aware of the behaviours that may increase their property exposure to risk such as posting on social media and checking in on their whereabouts while on holiday.
“To further protect your property, it is also of importance to ensure that you have adequate non-life insurance cover and that your policy is up to date to ensure that you are sufficiently covered,” added Mr Palagangwe. The following products will ensure that you are financially covered, should an insured loss occur:
- Homeowners’ cover – which insures your home building, features, and fittings.
- Householders’ policy (also known as house contents) – covering all moveable items within your property.
If you are leaving your property unoccupied for extended periods of time, it’s advisable to contact your insurer to confirm any insurance policy limitations.