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Thursday, 25 June 2015

Burglary insurance explained

Burglary insurance is a policy that covers loss or damage to the insured property and any content whilst contained within the premises as a result of theft accompanied by actual forcible and violent breaking into or out of a building.

Burglary Insurance provides cover for the following occurrences:

  • Loss or damage to insured property due to burglary and/or housebreaking
  • Damage to premises caused by burglars during burglary or attempts at burglary. The policy pays actual loss/damage to the insured property caused by burglary/house breaking subject to the limit of sum insured.
  • If the sum insured is not adequate, the policy pays only proportionate loss. There is also a provision in the policy to cover bulk items on "first loss" basis, wherein a percentage of total stock stored can be taken as that exposed to the risk of burglary and housebreaking. The premium is charged on this percentage selected only. A nominal premium is charged on the balance stock.
  • The policy can be extended to cover riot, strike, malicious damage and theft. Further, policies can be issued on declaration basis and on floater basis for stocks.
Burglary Insurance companies require policyholders to notify the authorities of the burglary as one of the first steps before they file a claim. Understanding your policy limits is the best way to avoid hassle when making a claim. If you have a police report and home inventory, then the claim process can take as little as a week or two for payment to arrive.

What to expect from your burglary insurance provider

Many insurers will provide a prepaid debit card to cover the expense of fixing or repairing windows or doors in order to prevent a fresh break-in and also to replace lost property before you are reimbursed to speed up the emotional recovery.

Once you make a claim, the insurance company will look more carefully at your situation and make adjustments to your premium. If it is your first and only claim, then chances are they won’t raise your rates. However, if it’s your second or third claim, or the insurer has experienced a number of claims from other policyholders in your neighbourhood, then they might if they think it is a trend.

Insurance companies can also change your deductible to a higher limit in order to protect themselves against future claims. It is very important to read and understand your policy before it becomes necessary to file a claim.

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