What you need to know before opting for home insurance
Home insurance is an important investment for homeowners. It will come in handy if there is any damage to property. However, choosing the right policy can be a daunting affair. Here are some factors for buyers to consider before purchasing home insurance.
The risks: Firstly, it’s crucial to understand the scope of the policy’s coverage. While most policies typically cover damage to the physical structure and any personal property inside it, there may be some exclusions or limitations.
For instance, the policy may not cover natural calamities like earthquakes, floods, and landslides. It is crucial to consider the risks of such events to your property. Also, Rahul M. Mishra, co-founder and director of Policy Ensure, said, “Home insurance policies typically have limited liability for personal injury or damage caused to a third party on the premises of the property.”
Coverage level: You must consider factors such as the home’s value, the cost of rebuilding, and the value of other personal property, etc. Mishra said, “It’s essential to consider a worst-case scenarios and ensure adequate coverage for rebuilding your home and replacing valuables, if required. For instance, the Bharat Grih Raksha Policy provides additional benefits such as coverage for buildings, furniture, fixtures, fittings, and contents at home, etc, besides renovation.”
Deductibles: Several insurers offer comprehensive coverage without deductibles. “For instance, the Bharat Grih Raksha Policy has no deductible and provides coverage for flood and earthquake damage, architect fees, alternative accommodation, and debris removal to a specified limit. It also imposes no penalty for underinsurance claims of less than 15%,” said Mishra.
The claims process: You must know how to file a claim, the type of documentation required, and the typical time taken for claim settlement. You should also be aware of any limitations or exclusions to the coverage and any applicable deductibles. Also, you must check the claim settlement ratio from the website of Irdai while choosing the insurance company.
Additionally, Sudhish Ramteke, associate director–head of Property Practice at Anand Rathi Insurance Brokers, said, “ You must ensure the correctness of particulars. For instance, property description, content description, location address etc., should be complete. Any mismatch in these areas can cause problems in the event of claims.”
For the records: Maintaining a record of your personal property is vital. This includes ownership deeds, with visuals of the exteriors and interiors of the property, and receipts for expensive items such as electronics and jewellery. These records can be helpful in the event of loss or damage, as they can provide proof of ownership and help expedite the claims process.