Suzy Pratt takes you through some general tips on how to keep your premium down and discusses some key risk management strategies.
Presenter: Suzy Pratt
“Hello. My name is Suzy Pratt and I’m an Insurance Manager at Capitol.
Today I’m going to give you some tips on how to help keep your insurance premium down. The best way to keep your premiums down is to avoid making claims.
“But that’s why I have insurance” I hear you say. Okay, let me explain.
Yes, you can make a claim on every single thing that happens that is due to an insurable event, but if you do, expect your premiums to go up, and expect your levies to increase to cover the extra cost. Instead, why not try some simple risk management strategies. In the world of risk management, there are four main strategies.
Avoid it. Reduce it. Transfer it. Accept it.
You live in a strata plan environment, but that doesn’t mean that the body corporate is responsible for everything. You should treat your property as if it were a stand-alone house, where you are responsible for maintaining your property and avoiding disasters that may not only affect your unit, but those around you.
Take responsibility. Clean out your gutters of leaves and debris. Check your roof, or have someone else do it for you, for broken tiles, broken skylights and any areas in need of maintenance where water could enter your unit. And act immediately, before the next rainy season. Don’t wait until it’s too late.
If you or your property manager notice water marks on the ceiling or walls, act immediately. Find out the cause and have it rectified. Ask your property manager to always look up during inspections. The sooner problems are solved, the better off you will be.
Check flexi hoses in the shower, on your dishwasher and your washing machine regularly. Changing a worn flexi hose costs very little, but can save thousands of dollars of water damage if they burst. Ensure you turn off taps to these appliances when you go on holidays, even if just for the weekend. Ensure you turn off electrical appliances at the wall when you go on holidays. TVs, stereos and the like. These can be a fire hazard. Turning them off also avoids damage caused by power surge during electrical storms.
Make sure your property is safe for visitors. Fix that broken floor tile. Move that hose stretching across the lawn.
In common areas, don’t leave rubbish lying around. Gardening supplies should be stored in safe areas, away from general people traffic. Don’t leave piles of mulch for the gardener in carparks, where people may trip if walking in the dark. Make sure all lighting in common areas and carparks are operational. Check garage doors to common carparks regularly, to ensure they are operating successfully. Make sure you lock up when you go out. Don’t leave keys laying around.
You have done all you can to avoid and reduce the risk of something happening that may result in a claim, but we all know that loss or damage will still occur. This is where your insurance policy comes in. Every policy has an excess to pay when a claim is made, usually around $500. If you have a claim worth $600, consider just paying it for yourself.
These small claims result in either premium increases or higher excesses to help eliminate them all together.
Not everything is an insurable event, otherwise premiums would be unaffordable. The policy has exclusions such as maintenance, faulty workmanship, wear and tear, and earth movement, except for earthquake. If it’s uninsurable, then sometimes we just have to accept that we may have to pay for the repairs ourselves. To summarise, be vigilant around your own property. Look for things that may cause damage and attend to them immediately.
Thank you for your interest.”
This video provides general insurance advice only and you should consult your Insurance Manager or Broker for specific advice on your individual case.