Moneycontrol
Sep 08, 2017 09:22 AM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Guarding your properties when nature has its own say

General insurance firms provide coverage against damage and theft to property. Protection is against burglary, fire, earthquake, perils like storms and floods being an option that can be covered at a small additional premium.

Guarding your properties when nature has its own say

Anil Rego

For the Mumbaikar July 26, 2005 was a watershed day. The city drowned in the deluge of a cloudburst. A dozen years later the city again faced the deluge of August 29, 2017. The city has always enjoyed the tremendous human spirit of residents coming together with outstretched hands to help anyone in need during these times of stress due to flooding, or terror and bomb attacks of 1993 or 2006. Religious and educational institutions threw their doors open without checking for the affiliations of those they provided protection, food and hospitality too. So did a few business establishments. The days of extreme stress were hardly scary to the Mumbaikar.

Other concerns pop up their ugly heads only as the waters recede. Motor vehicles damaged on the way home, or submerged where they were parked would have suffered damage to the upholstery as well as possibly to their engines. Insurers are likely to pay for cleaning of upholstery. Complete loss to the vehicle would be entertained and paid after deductibles and depreciation if it can be proved that the damage was not due to carelessness of the owner. The need to show that due caution was taken could be a burden on the vehicle owner. Small claims are best borne by the owner as it would leave a clean claim record and not impact the no-claim bonus.

High property prices make the home an extremely precious possession. It is common to have almost all other wealth such as jewellery, currency and documents of ownership of other assets in the home. While Mumbai has been fortunate to have citizens keeping others and their assets safe during the crisis, the flooding in a more ‘developed’ Houston in the US led to fears of looting and action to avoid it. For the Indian it is an additional call to protect the person as well as moveable property and fixed assets.

Few properties in India are insured. General insurance firms provide coverage against damage and theft to property. Protection is against burglary, fire, earthquake, perils like storms and floods being an option that can be covered at a small additional premium. Cover of property is for the plinth, foundation and structure – at reconstruction. The market value of the property is of no significance! Contents of the house, such as electrical, electronic goods and furniture are included in the householder’s insurance. An additional premium will cover other components of the property such as the compound, and precious contents like works of art and jewellery. Loss of rent is an additional option too.

It is an amazingly low cost of about Rs. 9,000 that will protect your precious assets valued at Rs. 75 lakhs! This would be about the loss of a pair of good shoes and set of clothing ruined as you trudged home in waist high water. Surely a drop in the ocean for the very substantial safeguard offered.

The writer is founder of Right Horizons
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