Handy Mac, aka Don MacAlister, is our expert on household DIY issues
A READER from Sunningdale needs advice about home insurance.
I need to reinsure my home. Please would you advise me on the following: Rands per square metre to rebuild a standard house in Sunningdale, Blouberg. Nothing fancy and with a cement-tiled roof. Some idea of the cost of clearing the plot should the house burn down, architect’s fees, and any other fees. A:
So many people are underinsured or place their insurance with cut-price specialists who are not there to help when disaster strikes. Stick to the big three corporates of the insurance world and you will receive proper service in the event of a disaster.
When calculating the value of your home for insurance, you need a quick and accurate method. No one wants to go to the expense of having the house measured brick by brick, but prices per square metre can be way off the mark, depending on the design of the house or the age. You need to insure for the cost of rebuilding – not what you could sell the house for, or your municipal value. In most cases, the cost of rebuilding will be higher, but offset this against the cost of homeowner’s insurance, which, in terms of what you are getting, is relatively cheap. So go high and never cut corners. A loss adjuster will pick up quickly if you are under-insured.
Without going into a house it is hard to go with flat rate, but for the main house I would not start with a figure below R15 000 a square metre. You can reduce this for garages, patios and decks. Don’t forget to add values for paved driveways, boundary walls or fences and swimming pools. Older homes with teak windows and timber floors need to be insured for a lot more.
For demolition and removal of debris, allow R500 a square metre, and add 10% to the rebuild costs for professional fees. Don’t forget the tax man’s share and add VAT.
These figures may be a bit on the high side, but rather be safe than sorry. By shopping around, you will find a better premium with better cover if you put your home, contents and cars all in the same basket.