Isn’t home insurance the same as my HDB fire insurance?
If you own an HDB flat, you would be covered by the compulsory HDB Fire Insurance Scheme. This policy will take care of rebuilding the structure of your house in case it is damaged by fire. But it is only a basic cover and does not insure your home contents. Your furniture, the amount that you have incurred on renovation, and your personal belongings are not covered.
Consider a situation in which the building that you live in catches fire and your furniture and the interiors of your flat suffer extensive damage. There could also be a situation where a water pipe bursts and floods your home or there is a short circuit resulting in localised damage.
Your HDB Fire Insurance will not pay for refurbishing your home. Fortunately, there is a simple solution to this problem. Etiqa Insurance, the same company that is responsible for providing HDB Fire Insurance, also offers a home contents insurance policy.
Remember that the home contents insurance policy is an additional insurance cover that you need to buy. A combination of the mandatory HDB Fire Insurance policy and Etiqa’s home contents insurance policy will provide complete coverage for your home and your household goods.
Many homeowners think that home insurance is a complicated subject. The truth is that for a relatively small amount, you can obtain insurance coverage that could save you tens of thousands of dollars in the event of a fire or some other type of accident.
Here we address nine of the most common misconceptions that arise in homeowners’ minds when they consider the subject of home contents insurance.
1. Home insurance costs even more than a home renovation
Many people will be pleasantly surprised to learn that home insurance policies are very reasonably priced. Etiqa’s ePROTECT home, which is available in three categories, costs substantially less than a dollar a day.
The prices quoted above are inclusive of GST. The most expensive product, Etiqa’s Prestige ePROTECT home, offers the best value for money with its 5 year policy, and costs little over 30 cents per day.
2. Home insurance will only cover fire incidents.
This is definitely not true.
All your household items and your personal effects are insured against fire, earthquake, hurricane, and a host of other natural disasters. Here are some of the other events that are covered:
- If a water pipe or a water tank bursts, causing damage to your personal goods.
- Loss due to the explosion of a domestic appliance.
- Smoke damage.
The dollar limits for the coverage are:
As a proud home owner, one of the biggest expenses you would have incurred upon purchasing your HDB flat would be your renovations. Depending on the extensiveness of the work and the age of your flat, renovation costs can easily exceed $50,000.
Etiqa’s policies offer coverage of up to $50,000, $70,000 and $80,000 with the three plans, making it easy to protect the cost you spent on your renovations.
When deciding on how much coverage to take, it makes sense to opt for a higher limit, as the additional cost is fairly low.
3. Fires are so rare, there’s no need to buy home insurance at all.
Many individuals think that since the probability of a mishap is small, there is no need to buy insurance. It is definitely true that the chance of your home catching fire or suffering damage due to a burst water pipe is unlikely. But why would you want to risk losing a large sum of money when you can buy insurance that could cost you less than a hundred dollars a year?
Additionally, although fires and other types of disasters are relatively rare, they do occur on a regular basis. According to data issued by the Singapore Civil Defence Force, 2016 saw a total of 4,114 cases of fire in Singapore. That’s more than 10 calls a day.
4. Home insurance don’t cover everyday household problems like plumbing or electrical issues
Guess what? Etiqa’s 5-year ePROTECT home insurance policy does.
The policy will get you several additional benefits through its Emergency Home Assistance (EHA) benefit.
- If you are locked out of your home or if a broken key is stuck in your lock, Etiqa will arrange for a locksmith to visit your home.
- You can call Etiqa if your water supply is clogged or your drainage system has stopped working. They will arrange for a plumber to carry out repairs.
The 5-year policy also covers electrical assistance and pest control services. Learn more about EHA here.
5. The home insurance covers the same risks as the fire insurance.
This is certainly not the case. In fact, Etiqa ePROTECT home has been designed to complement the HDB Fire Insurance policy. It is prudent to buy both policies.
6. I need another policy to protect my valuables
Etiqa ePROTECT home provides insurance coverage for your valuables in the case of damage or loss, of up to 30% of the sum assured, and up to $1000 per item – which excludes the first $100 paid for each and every item that is damaged or lost.
This is particularly useful if you are an art collector. For all works of art, paints, fine glassware and crystal, tapestries, antiques and other collectibles, Etiqa Insurance’s ePROTECT home will cover up to $200 per item and up to 5% of the sum assured.
In fact, the policy even covers your domestic helper’s belongings. The limit is S$2,500 with a sub-limit of S$500 for each item.
7. The home insurance does not cover any of my medical expenses in the case of a fire.
Absolutely not. Etiqa’s policies cover you or any member of your household for a maximum of S$1,000 for medical treatment if your injury is the result of fire or any other insured risk.
8. If my home becomes uninhabitable, I will have to pay to stay at some other place out of my own pocket.
If your home is damaged, repairs are bound to take time. Where will you live in the interim? Etiqa ePROTECT home allows you to arrange alternative accommodation for your family at the insurance company’s cost. Of course, this is subject to a certain overall limit and a daily maximum of S$350.
This benefit can be very useful, as it will allow you to stay elsewhere while your home is repaired.
9. Home insurance does not cover theft.
Nope, theft is covered too, subject to certain conditions. If there is a break-in and your valuables are stolen, you will be reimbursed by the insurance company
Don’t ignore this vital issue
Insuring the contents of your home takes just a few minutes and costs very little. But many homeowners fail to buy a home insurance policy. This lapse can prove to be very expensive if there is a fire or a robbery at your house.
As the owner of your own HDB flat, you must make the effort to buy an insurance policy that covers its contents. The Etiqa ePROTECT home makes a logical choice as the company is also the designated insurance provider for your HDB Fire Insurance policy.