|Insurance Buying Tips #1: Shop smart|
|When looking for insurance, your No. 1 priority should be to find adequate coverage. Price is important, but you’ll want to determine what kind of coverage you need first. Then you can fit that coverage into your budget and determine which carrier can provide you with the most comprehensive policy for your situation. You may be tempted to choose insurance with the lowest price tag, but if you don’t have enough coverage (or the right kind of coverage), you will see less financial benefit when it comes time to file a claim.|
|Insurance Buying Tips #2: Look for discounts|
|Once you evaluate your coverage needs, factor in your budget and find ways to save. Ask your insurance agent if there are any discounts on your coverage. Often, carriers offer discounts for things like paying your policy in full, staying auto accident-free or, if you’re in school, getting good grades. You also can save money by “bundling” multiple policies, such as purchasing a home and auto policy from the same carrier.|
|Insurance Buying Tips #3: Fill in the gaps|
|An average policy will cover the basics, but you may need to add extra coverage to meet your unique needs. For instance, you may have items like electronics or a nice piece of jewelry that would be financially difficult to replace, even with the assistance of your average renters or homeowners policy. You may want to add additional coverage for these items.|
While the occurrence of an earthquake or typhoon in South Africa may seem unrealistic, the chances of a natural disaster occurring remain high. However, it is important to remember that natural disasters come in all shapes and forms, and are not simply limited to devastating earthquakes or months of torrential rain.
Thanks to Hollywood, we are accustomed to a variety of natural disasters that leave cities in turmoil – from sky-high tsunamis to earthquakes that result in cities disappearing before our eyes. While over-dramatized, these movies do shed light on the fury of mother nature and are often based on the fact that these disasters do occur on a regular basis. Tornados, hurricanes, floods, earthquakes and tsunamis happen all over the world, in varying degrees, and often leave cities and their communities stranded and helpless. South Africa, however, is located away from many of the dangerous and overwhelming disaster areas, and is only prone to a few of the many natural disasters that wreak havoc all over the world.
Regardless of the fact that we are geographically located on a tectonic plate that causes very little commotion, it is still important to ensure that we invest in reliable home insurance. The last thing that anyone wants is to be caught off guard – in a flood or storm – that results in significant damage to the structure of our homes. An affordable insurance policy ensures that our homes and their contents are protected against any damage that may be caused in the event of a natural disaster. If, however, you are looking for the facts on whether or not South Africa is in Mother Nature's sights for natural disasters, take a look at the following information:
|Insurance Buying Tips #4: Purchase life insurance—you aren’t too young|
|Life insurance is essential, no matter how young or old you are. And for millennials, buying now may be a smart move because it’s cheaper to buy a life insurance policy when you’re young and healthy. This kind of insurance can help your family cover unexpected costs in your absence, including student loan debt or a mortgage, in addition to end-of-life costs. And if you have kids, a life insurance policy can also support their education or childcare expenses. Additionally, every millennial should consider long-term disability coverage, which helps you stay afloat financially if an accident happens and you become disabled and unable to work.|
|Insurance Buying Tips #5: Talk to an independent agent|
|An independent insurance agent is an essential resource when purchasing insurance—especially if this is your first time. An independent agent works with multiple different carriers, which is different from captive agents who can only sell insurance from the carrier they work for. Working with an independent agent can help make sure that you are getting the best coverage, for the best price. You’ll also benefit from independent agents’ insurance knowledge; they know how to talk you through your options and actually explain what each policy includes. An independent agent will make sure all of your assets are covered, help you find discounts or other ways to save, and be a valuable resource as your life changes and your insurance needs change, too.|
|Insurance Buying Tips #6: Only buy insurance to maintain your existing standard of living|
|You don’t need insurance for events that won’t severely strain your finances. Start with your basic needs (home, auto, business), then work your way to include other needs (cyber, liability). You can always obtain coverage later for something if you change your mind. You can minimize your risk and maximize your savings by buying insurance that won’t cause you to break the bank.|
South Africa experienced the worst drought in recent history during the 2015/2016 summer period. Due to rising temperatures and the decreasing annual rain fall, South Africa is quickly becoming more and more arid. The chances of droughts occurring are on the increase, especially during the summer months.
Although not frequent, South Africa has experienced a handful of damaging earthquakes. However, earth tremors happen on a more regular basis and can cause minor damage.
During the early 2000s, South Africa experienced lengthy periods of rain resulting in devastating floods in both urban and rural areas. However, as the annual rain levels decrease, the chances of flooding decrease too.
While we may not experience tsunamis like they do in Asia, the South African coastline is prone to tumultuous seas in the event of earthquakes and tectonic movement that occur kilometres away from South African boarders. In the event of turbulent seas and unusual tides, it is best to stay away from the coastline until the patterns have normalised.
Due to the increasing temperatures and dry terrain, the chances of severe wildfires have increased sevenfold. In 2015, the Western Cape was ravaged by severe wildfires that lasted for a few weeks, threatening many homes, and indigenous fauna and flora in the area.
If you are concerned that you may be residing in an area that is prone to natural disasters, the best course of action would be to contact your insurance provider to ensure that your policy is up to date.
|Insurance Buying Tips #7: Ask your insurance provider what the policy doesn’t cover|
|Every insurance policy has perils that are not covered by your policy. These perils are referred to as “exclusions”, and every policy has them. Ask your insurance provider to explain the exclusions in your policy to avoid discovering what they are once you incur damages or a loss.|
|Insurance Buying Tips #8: Consider bundling several policies with one insurance carrier|
|here may be value in bundling several policies with one insurance carrier. If you’re looking to insure multiple vehicles or obtain multiple types of business coverage (e.g., liability, property, cyber), then you may want to consider obtaining coverages under one insurance provider who carries multiple products, and who may be able to offer you multi-policy discounts or loyalty programs.|
|Insurance Buying Tips #9: Review your insurance needs on a yearly basis|
|As your needs evolve, so will your insurance policy. Maybe you’ve acquired a new vehicle since obtaining auto insurance for your primary vehicle, or started operating your business out of your home, or experienced a cyber-attack during the year… Whatever the change(s), you’ll want to make sure you’re covered for any new risk exposures. Talk to your insurance provider to stay on top of your insurance needs.|