Johannesburg – When it comes to insurance, make sure you evaluate your policy to ensure that you are paying for cover that you actually need.
Premiums are determined on a person’s risk factors, and making simple changes can help decrease them, said Colin Mchunu, regional manager at Alexander Forbes Insurance. This leads to long-term saving benefits.
Tips to bring down premiums
1. Vehicle insurance
Lower powered, lower value and low risk vehicles often get charged cheaper insurance premiums, explained Mchunu. “Try limit the mileage of the vehicle, especially when driving to and from work.” Rather use lift clubs or public transport like the Gautrain. This limits the vehicles risk exposure of being on the road, which can bring down the premium, he said.
When it comes to security of a vehicle, where the vehicle is kept during the day and night is important. “It is safer to park a vehicle in a garage, than in the street, perpetrators won’t have access to it,” he said. When you are at work, park the vehicle in a basement or a secured parking lot. Having a tracking device also improves the chances of recovery if the vehicle is stolen. Installing an immobilizer can also help deter theft.
A lot of insurance companies use telematics technology to measure driver behaviour, and give discounts for safer driving. It is up to the driver to query premiums if they feel they are paying too much for the value of their vehicles, said Mchunu. Increasing your excess voluntarily can help to reduce the value of future claims.
Drivers should also evaluate cover extensions. For example, if there is more than one vehicle in a household, then paying for car hire services may not be necessary.
For household insurance, do an inventory on the content in the house once a year. This will keep you updated on the assets you have in a house, which will be a good indicator of what should be insured, explained Mchunu. “Getting a vault is also a cheaper option than insurance.” The vault can be used to keep valuable pieces of jewellery and important documents.
Try to live in secure complexes, in safe areas, to limit risk exposure.
During difficult economic times, people often opt to cancel their insurance, said Mchunu. However, the financial risk and debt falls on the individual in the case where their belongings are at risk. If you choose to reduce cover or self-insure, then save the money that would have gone towards the premium.
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