With the cost of real estate skyrocketing day by day, owning a house has become a big challenge for many of us. Nevertheless, we still manage to buy a place for ourselves because we understand the importance of having a private space. Home is where people find solace in after a hard day’s work. It is also probably the costliest investment many of us have ever made. We have all gone an extra mile to change a house to a home by investing our time, energy and money. Given this, it becomes important to protect the house and its contents from unexpected events. A good home insurance plan can secure your home against any unforeseen mishaps and offer peace of mind to you and your loved ones.
What is Home Insurance?
Simply put, a home insurance policy will cover the physical structure as well as the personal property inside the home. In case of unforeseen incident like fire, burglary, lightning or earthquake, the home insurance policy will cover any damage caused to the physical structure as well as the belongings inside the house like TV, fixtures, credit cards, money and important documents. A comprehensive home insurance cover will also protect you against any liability to third party property that is caused by you or your immediate family members. Also, alternative accommodation expenses will be covered in case your property is damaged due to an unexpected event. When it comes to securing your home, you should never wait for a calamity to remind you the importance of buying a home insurance.
In Singapore, it is relatively easy to secure a home insurance for your beloved property. Most insurers require the property to be situated at Singapore and place no other condition to provide a home insurance. Applying for a home insurance has become easier than ever with most of the insurers going online. Not only applying online from the comfort of your home is a convenient and quick method, you will also be able to compare quotes, premiums and other information easily.
Some insurers offers a variety of home insurance schemes ranging from a basic no-frills cover to a very detailed coverage that includes protection to pedigree pet and compensation for the loss of credit cards. As far as the home insurance premium is considered, it is decided by a variety of factors like the age of home, the wiring, the roof type, proximity to a fire station, exposure to weather or natural calamities and presence of protective devices in the home.
Type of Home Insurance Policies
Home insurance schemes can be broadly classified into two types – homeowner’s policy and renter’s insurance policy.
- Homeowner Policy
For owners of a home, a homeowner policy will offer coverage against any damage to the physical structure of the home as well as the property.
- Renter Insurance
A person residing in a place that is rented out has a liability towards the contents of the house. A renter’s insurance policy will protect the personal property.
Contrary to the popular belief, a landlord’s home insurance policy will never cover the belongings of a person who has rented out the place. If you are staying at your own house, it is advisable that you get your house covered with a comprehensive home insurance scheme. This way, you can be sure that your home as well as your personal belongings inside it are secured.
Types of Coverage
Here’s a list of risks that are commonly covered by most of the home insurance plans in Singapore.
- Household Contents Cover
The common items inside the house such as furniture, domestic appliances like TV and refrigerator, clothing, jewellery, computers and crockery will be covered.
- Cover for Fixtures and Fittings
This cover will offer protection for items such as wardrobes, air conditioners, floor coverings and other such renovations and fixtures.
- Damage to the House
This will cover any damage to the house itself, up to the amount of the policy.
- Additional Living Expenses and Accommodation Costs
If the house cannot be occupied due to a covered loss, the insurer will pay for the necessary accommodation costs incurred by the home owner.
- Personal Liability Cover
This will protect the insured from any claim arising from an accidental physical damage to a third party’s property.
- Additional Covers
Additional cover that come with home insurance include replacement cover for loss of personal money, documents and cards and cover against accidental death of a pedigree pet.
Benefits of Home Insurance
Prevention is always better than the cure. Having a home insurance policy will give you the confidence to face the unexpected because of the following reasons.
- While natural calamities cannot be controlled, some man-made mishaps are also inevitable. Your precious home needs protection against natural hazards like earthquakes, flood and also human acts like vandalism and theft. A home insurance will enable you to recover from the loss and rebuild your house,
- Not only the physical structure comprising of beams and bars, what makes a house a home is the belongings inside. A home insurance will protect your money, debit & credit cards, important documents and other personal belongings and will cover the cost of replacement.
- Also remember the fact that a home insurance will simplify things for you when you are thinking about home loan. Some banks even have a pre-condition that the home should be insured for the loan to be disbursed.
- You will also be protected against any liability arising out of an accidental damage to a third party property that is caused by you or your family members which will protect you from any legal problems.
- With the accommodation costs covered by the insurer, you can rebuild the house quickly and also your family can get back to the normal lives with ease.
Eligibility for Home Insurance in Singapore
The basic eligibility criteria for obtaining a home insurance in Singapore is as follows.
- To apply for a home insurance in Singapore, the person must be an owner or co-owner for a property in Singapore.
- For tenant insurance, the applicant must be a tenant in a property that is located at Singapore.
Knowing what your policy will cover and what your policy won’t will simplify your claim filing process. Here are some of the common home insurance exclusions that your policy will not cover.
- Most of the home insurance policies will not cover nuclear hazards.
- War, including civil war and undeclared war will not be covered.
- Loss or damage to property caused by bad repair, poor workmanship, faulty construction materials and defective maintenance.
- Neglect or intentional loss.
- Action by Government such as confiscation or loss of property that is caused by an ordinance or law like demolition or construction that is required to bring your home up to the code.
- Damage caused by water such as floods and water that seeps through the foundation.
- Damage caused by movement of earth like shockwaves, landslides and mudflows.
- Loss or damage to the property caused by radioactivity, sonic bangs and pollution & contamination.
However, the exclusions may vary depending on the insurer and the policy. Do read the policy document carefully to understand the conditions, exclusions and policy inclusions before applying or making a claim.
Home Insurance Premium in Singapore
Home insurance premium rates in Singapore ranges anywhere from $40 to $400 depending on the type of the property and if it is homeowner or a tenant scheme. The premium rate is also based on the coverage, basic or comprehensive. Some insurers provide a very detailed home insurance policy that covers the loss of cards and also a pedigree pet. Also, proximity to fire station, frequency of occurrence of a natural disaster and if any security devices has been installed in the property.
Companies Offering Home Insurance in Singapore
Here are some of the well-known insurers offering home insurance as a product.