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Knowledge Hub

Knowledge Hub

5 min read

What to Expect if You Make a Claim for Home Contents Insurance?

Home and Leisure January 19, 2024

For property and homeowners seeking appropriate protection for their belongings and personal property, it’s essential to have the right kind of Home Contents Insurancein place. Discover more about how you can safeguard your possessions with Dialdirect. Our expert knowledge and advice uncovers common misconceptions when it comes to making a Home Contents Insurance claim



5 Common Home Contents Insurance claims


There are many types of Home Contents claims. Some of the most common ones include the following:


1. Power surge damage: electrical appliances may need replacing due to factors including electrical malfunctions, utility grid problems, and lightning.

2. Home break-ins and burglaries: where thieves may target high-value items in your home, like electrical appliances or jewellery. 

3. Fire: damage to furniture, electronics, and clothing. Kitchen accidents, unforeseen incidents and electrical faults are often the cause. 

4. Water damage: burst pipes, leaks, or flooding can result in damage to your personal items, as well as furniture, curtains, and carpets.

5. Accidental damage: unintentional accidents such as spills can result in costly damage to household items and personal belongings. 

Discover more about The most common property damage claims in SA right now. 

Intentional damage and general wear and tear damage are not generally covered by Home Contents Insurance. In addition, due to their high value, Dialdirect recommends specialised insurance cover for items like expensive jewellery, fine art, and collectables. Speak with a trained consultant to get the best Home Contents Insurance and the right kind of cover for your possessions. 



What you’re covered for under Home Contents Insurance in South Africa



In South Africa, Contents Insurance covers a number of different events. However, it’s important to understand what is and what is not covered under this insurance policy. Let’s take a closer look at these two scenarios:

When you are covered

Imagine that a burst pipe in the bedroom leads to significant damage to your furniture, electronics, and clothing. Home Contents Insurance will provide coverage for repairing or replacing the damaged items. This ensures that you are financially protected against these unforeseen events. 


When you are not covered


If a storm hits your home and causes structural damage resulting in the bedroom roof caving in and damaging the tiles or carpet, you would not be covered.  Even though Contents Insurance protects your belongings from damage, it doesn't apply to structural damage. In such cases, the coverage you require comes from Building Insurance. 

Dialdirect recommends that homeowners and landlords have both Building Insurance and Home Contents Insurance to ensure they are covered in any eventuality that leads to property damage.  


How the Home Contents Insurance claim process works


To ensure a successful claim, it's essential to follow the correct process:

  • Report to the police (if applicable). If a break-in or burglary occurs, reporting the incident to the police should be your first step. Obtain a copy of the police report, as this is an important document for your claim.

  • Document the damage or loss. If possible, capture the damage or loss on camera. Utilising visual proof can be instrumental in evidencing your claim.

  • Contact your insurer. You can report your covered loss or damage and begin the process of resolution. Your insurance provider is there to support you along the way with guidance and the necessary steps.

  • Provide the necessary information. This should include thepolicy number, your contact information, and a description of the incident. Remember to also include the event date and time.

  • Meet with an adjustor/assessor. To secure a fair evaluation of your loss, your insurance provider might assign an adjustor or assessor to assess the damage's magnitude and determine the claim's worth. 

  • Complete any forms. To legitimise your claim, it's possible that your insurer may request that you complete certain forms. It's essential that you submit accurate and complete information on these.

  • Quotes for repairs and invoices for damaged items. You may need to supply supporting evidence of cost, and you will need to obtain quotes for repairs or replacement. Do not embark on any repair work until you’ve received authorisation from your insurer. 

  • Review the settlement. Once the assessment process is complete,the insurer will present you with a proposal. This consists of a settlement offer that covers the expenses necessary for repairing or replacing the items lost or damaged.

  • Wait for the claim payment. Your insurer will provide an estimated timeline for claiming payment once you accept the settlement offer. 

  • Use the funds for repair or replacement: Restore your home and belongings to their original condition by using the claim funds to repair or replace lost or damaged items.


Is it worth claiming for Home Contents Insurance?

The decision to make a claim on your Home Contents Insurance will depend on several factors. Some of these include: 

  • The extent of the damage: Making a claim becomes more compelling when the damage or loss is extensive and hard to replace.

  • Deductibles/excess. Before insurance can assist with covering losses, you'll need to pay the deductible amount out-of-pocket. Sometimes, it makes sense not to file a claim if the cost is only slightly more than the deductible. 

  • Impact on premiums. Submitting a claim could have an impact on your monthly premiums, ultimately affecting the overall cost of your policy.

  • Coverage limits. High-value items, such as art or antiques, might not be covered under your policy. You may need to obtain extra or specialised coverage for these possessions.

A recent survey from InfoQuest[1] found that 10% of respondents claimed that they had cancelled their Home Contents Insurance policy due to the rising cost of living and the need to rebalance finances. People choosing to cancel their insurance policies without realising the potential financial consequences thereof should consider the cost of having to repair or replace these items if disaster hit. 


Get a Home Contents Insurance quote from Dialdirect

Get peace of mind today with Dialdirect's Home Contents Insurance quote. By taking the next step and getting comprehensive coverage, you'll be able to protect your precious home possessions.

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