Handy Mac, aka Don Ma­cAl­is­ter, is our expert on house­hold DIY is­sues

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - HOME -

A READER from Sun­ning­dale needs advice about home in­surance.

Q:

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.

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