5 ways to reduce your house fire insurance costs (dramatically)

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Here are some things you can do to ensure you get more value out of what you pay for your house fire insurance. 

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House fire insurance in Malaysia is so important and frankly non-negotiable, yet we sometimes take our eyes off it a little when completing the deal for our dream home. Many people don’t scrutinize the coverage being given by the policy they are signing up for. For example, is there coverage for damages caused by floods, storms, lightning strikes or landslides? You might think it will never happen to you living in the city but as we have found out in recent times, flash floods can happen when we least expect it. If we were to pay more attention to our insurance policy, we could find that premiums have been quietly increasing over time and may be costing you more money than they should. 

Here are some tips on how to ensure that you are not paying more than you should and to reduce your house fire insurance cost. 

Note: Fire insurance normally refers to basic or generic coverage while home insurance normally has comprehensive coverage and has different product benefits. 

1. Your property type matters.

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You should know that the house type is the thing that matters when it comes to house fire insurance, and not whether the property is old or new. 

When choosing a House Fire Insurance policy, it is always best to appreciate that the compensation or pay-out only differs between type-of-house (ie. Bungalow, terrace, semi-detached etc.) and not age-of-house (new house, old house). Materials used to build the house makes a difference as well. A full-brick house has a cheaper rate compared to a partial-brick house while a fully wooden house will be classified under declined risks. If you are unsure how to calculate the building cost of your property, you can use the building calculation provided by PIAM here (https://bcc.piam.org.my/).

Doing due diligence on your property’s area will help too. For example, if your property is located in a flood-risk area, it may make it difficult for you to secure a house fire insurance or may be required to pay a higher premium. 

 

2. Don’t over or under insure.

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I think the common mistake that a lot of house owners make when it comes to house fire insurance is that they either end up taking a policy that is more than what they need, or insufficient for their needs. Ensure that you take stock of the rebuilding costs and the household items within it. For the bigger household items like your TV, air-conditioner, sofa etc., ensure that you always keep the receipt for these items so you can prove their costs if need be. 

Depreciation value of items will be factored in too of course so naturally a new house with new items gives you a greater advantage of recouping the cost of items, should the house burn down. This is because the insurance claims payout will be paid based on the market value of items after depreciation. Older houses with aged contents may make it difficult for you to recoup the original cost of the items in it.

3. Understanding your coverage needs.

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It’s important to consider what your needs are when you are looking to purchase a home insurance policy. For example, are you planning to live in the property or are you planning to rent it out? This may influence the kind of policy you would like to purchase based on the things that may concern you personally. You may also want to check if there is already available coverage for your property. 

In strata titled property cases, your residential building may be covered by an existing policy taken up by your Joint Management Body (JMB). In cases like this, you just have to look into buying content (householder policy) to avoid spending unnecessarily.

A good tip is to survey for policies that allow you to customise the rider according to your needs. For example, Tune Protect Home Easy Insurance offers optional top-up packs that allow you to tag on items that fit your needs, like the Landlord Insurance Pack for rental properties that insures the owner from things like malicious damages caused by tenants. Also, the Home Care pack will cover items like the repair of burst water pipes and damage caused by termites.

4. Improve your home security

©andreypopov |123rf

Improving your home security can help you save costs on your house fire insurance. As long as you don’t keep blocks of gold under your mattress, you may not need to have such a robust policy if you invest more in bulking up the security of your home. 

Things like burglar alarms and deadbolt locks can help decrease the risk of break-ins. When theft happens, insurance will only pay claims if there is a forced break-in, where your home security is compromised.

5. Review your policy annually and shop around

We can sometimes leave our house fire insurance policy as a stagnant thing that we constantly pay for but never review. You should periodically review your home (fire) insurance policy from the bank and check-in with other insurers to make sure you’re still getting the best value for your money. Insurers like Tune Protect makes this easier by giving you the option to review and purchase products online. 

Many consumers may end up obtaining their coverage from banks for their homes. This may seem like a convenient thing, but it makes it harder for owners to track annual policy costs as insurance renewal bills are usually sent directly to the mortgage bank and may be charged under your loan account. So it is wise to check your home insurance and compare it with the market. 

If you are currently shopping around for house fire insurance or perhaps are looking to review the current one you have and to see what is available out there that may offer you more value, why not check out what Tune Protect has to offer. 

Tune Protect has launched a Home Easy product online. This is a comprehensive home (fire) insurance that provides coverage for your building and home contents. Tune Protect prides itself on being one of the most affordable house fire insurance providers in the market. 

On top of that, they offer you great flexibility in the way you can customise your policy based on your needs. The HouseOwner section covers your residential building including garages, fixtures and fittings, walls, gates and fences around the premise while the HouseHolder section covers your home contents and personal effects which belong to you or members of your family. You can also opt for the add-on coverage on damages from things like riots and landslides.  

For those of you who intend to rent out the property you have, you can opt for the very useful Landlord Insurance Pack which covers rental-related risks such as loss of income due to your tenant running away, malicious damage by your tenant and even loss or damage due to theft because of unoccupancy.

The fact that Tune Protect offers you the option of buying their products completely online makes it extremely convenient for homeowners to survey what products they may have and buy the policy that suits their needs. This is also especially helpful in this current period when moving around may be difficult.  

Tune Protect is so confident that their prices offered are the lowest that they are running a Lowest Price Guarantee Campaign. From now until 31st August 2021, if you happen to find an insurer that offers house insurance online which is cheaper than theirs, they will refund you the price difference between the two policies. Terms and conditions may apply. To find out more on how you can save more than 40% for home fire insurance, check out Tune Protect Home Easy Insurance here. 


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