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Buildings Insurance: An Overview

Friday, 24 June 2022

Before you signed on the dotted line and the sign in front of the house went from “On Sale” to “Sold”, remember how much time you spent comparing everything? From neighborhoods, proximity to restaurants and health centres, which bank offered you a better rate and so much more…

The same amount of comparison and weighing of options needs to go into selecting the ideal insurance for you and your house. Having buildings insurance is essential for every homeowner, having the option to compare different insurers is just as essential.


What is buildings insurance?


Buildings insurance covers your physical property and anything that's a permanent part of it — in other words, anything you’d leave behind if you moved. The responsibility for this insurance lies with the property’s owner. If you’ve purchased a home it’s usually required if you’re being financed by a bank. If you’re renting a property, your landlord will need to pay for this and if you’re a landlord this will be your responsibility. 

Purchasing buildings insurance will restore your home to the state it was in before it was damaged by something like a fire or water damage. It isn’t dependent on your property’s market value or location. Like home insurance, it will depend on the current state of your property, including any improvements or additions you’ve made to it. Having a claim successfully paid out often depends on whether you’ve taken reasonable measures to keep your property safe and prevent accidents. It also assumes that your home has been properly constructed and that you’ve made a reasonable effort to maintain it. 


What does buildings insurance cover?


When you take up comprehensive buildings insurance with Auto & General Insurance, we’ll protect the structure of your home against damage caused by fire, floods, land subsidence, burst pipes and so much more.

Apart from the protection that buildings insurance offers your home, it also gives you peace of mind and financial protection should something unfortunate happen.


Buildings insurance vs. Contents insurance


The difference between buildings and contents insurance is that buildings insurance covers the physical structure of the property, including the walls, roof and floors, while contents insurance covers items inside the property, like furniture and freestanding appliances. 


At Auto & General, our buildings insurance policy will cover the actual structure of your home against loss or damage and not what you have filled it with. The reason why we offer a separate policy for the structure of your home to Home Contents Insurance is because it faces a range of more severe risks that have a much bigger financial impact on you if your buildings are ever impacted by these risks.

How much does buildings insurance cost?


The exact buildings insurance cost can vary depending on many factors to do with yourself and your home, these range from the location of the building to the number of occupants at the address. To get an exact quote for buildings insurance, request a quote here


When it comes to finding buildings insurance in South Africa, there are many policies out there to choose from. When comparing quotes for buildings insurance, it’s important to compare at least three different insurers based on the following factors:


  • Premium/pricing: When it comes to insurance, we are always tempted to opt for the lowest premium value, but experts advise that going for the lowest premium may mean compromising on what you are covered for.

  • Value for Money: Find out what each insurance company will cover your home for. This includes the rand value and the type of damage your home is covered for. Some cover types need to be supplemented because they don’t cover things like burst geysers, or flooding. You don’t want to find yourself paying for insurance only to find out that you’re not covered for that aspect when you claim, make sure you understand what’s included and what’s excluded before you decide.

  • Reviews and Recommendations: What are other customers saying about the service and their claims experience with each insurer should tell you a lot about what you can expect if you were to sign up as their customer. Go online, read some reviews, talk to your homeowner friends about their insurer and see which company will suit you from a customer expectation perspective.

  • Excesses: You also need to consider if there’ll be any excess involved when you need to claim, what the respective excess amounts are and are you prepared to cover these amounts from your own pocket in the event that you need to make a claim.1


Ready to get covered?


Buildings insurance can put any worries to rest, knowing that you’re protected if the worst happens. If you’re ready to find out more, Auto & General can help you today. Apply for an obligation-free quote for buildings insurance cover today. 

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