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Insure your assets against natural calamities

Insure your assets against natural calamities

14 Aug 2017 | 12:27 AM

PROPERTY:Climate change is not merely a much talked about subject anymore.

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KG Krishnamoorthy Rao

Climate change is not merely a much talked about subject anymore. It has started manifesting itself rather cruelly. Unseasonal heavy rains and floods are no longer abnormal.  Every year, several parts of the country face unprecedented rain that causes mayhem in peoples’ lives. The constant lash of rain causes floods in several regions of India causing numerous deaths, health hazards, damage to automobiles and property. 

Be prepared

While natural calamities are unpredictable and unavoidable, it is imperative that we keep ourselves prepared for such eventualities with effective loss-minimisation measures.  However, there could still be financial losses due to damage to property which cannot be avoided altogether.  Insurance provides effective solution in terms of mitigating such losses by providing adequate compensation.

Property, motor insurance

While life and health insurance covers are vital for every human being, it is essential to include property and motor insurance as an integral component of your financial planning.

Few things in life matter as much to us, as our home does. Any damage to this can cause financial as well as emotional setback. While emotional setback is in the realm of the mind, only an appropriate insurance for property can safeguard one from financial setback. Apart from the building itself, the contents and other valuables in the house can also be protected through a home insurance cover. Usually, property insurance provides coverage against natural calamities such as fire, explosion and implosion, earthquake, lightning, storm, cyclone, tempest, tornado, hurricane, flood and inundation, subsidence, landslides and rockslides.

Property/home insurance policies are not solutions for natural calamities alone. They offer compensation for losses arising out of a number of other eventualities. They provide coverage against fire, burglary/housebreaking and natural calamities, losses or damages to domestic and electronic appliances and portable equipment, such as laptops, liabilities like tenants’ legal liability, domestic workers compensation and public liability.

During floods, automobiles are partially or completely submerged in water and citizens struggle with ways to recover their vehicle. 

Innovative solutions

People in flood-prone areas find it  difficult to get their cars towed away and delivered to workshops and dealers. Additionally, they are also charged higher parking fee by dealers (approx. Rs 11,000) and even higher by recovery van dealers just to get their cars towed away to a garage or workshop.

These are times when insurers stretch themselves to offer timely and innovative solutions to mitigate the miseries of the customer. Insurers not only provide financial support for repairing your car but also can help you with valuable tips to avoid further aggravation of the loss or damage to the car.

Add-on covers

What is important is that you should not delay reporting your vehicle to the nearest workshop. The list of workshops can be availed from your insurer itself. It is advisable to purchase additional protection by way of add-on insurance covers, which can be added to your current policy at minimal cost. Add-on covers like engine protector/hydrostatic lock cover will cover you against losses to engine due to water ingression.

Right insurance cover

To buy the right insurance policies to cover your property and vehicle, especially during natural calamities, you need to evaluate various policies available in the market before signing on the dotted line. Gather all information on the policy and the insurer to understand their reputation in the market, particularly the speed of claim settlement. Be aware of the inclusions and exclusions of the policy so that you can have an appropriate mix of all that you require. Inexpensive covers may leave out some key coverage that is crucial for full protection. Look for available insurance riders. The insurance company that you approach may be able to offer you extra coverage especially for valuable items like jewellery.

Time to take a call

Timing, too, is important when it comes to disaster insurance. It is important that you may not be given a cover against a natural disaster when one is in the offing. Always remember to read the contents of the insurance policy. Do ensure that you purchase the policy from an insurer with a good claim settlement record. Think about the security and amity that the insurance protection will offer.

The writer is Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Future Generali India Insurance Company Limited. The views expressed in this article are his own

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