Fire & Home Insurance03/12/2010
The conflagration shown on our television screens in recent days reminds us how little we can anticipate daily events. History is written in retrospect.
In Israel usually, after such an event, an investigating committee is appointed, headed by one respected figure or another. The committee attempts in its findings to figure out what should have been done and how the disaster could have been reduced in extent or prevented entirely.
Catastrophes occur; natural disasters happen with or without planning, and we can only try to improve our preparations, while experiencing the incomprehensible powers of nature.
Each of us must examine our readiness for such a disaster. Fire consumes everything, and, if not the fire, then the thick smoke that follows penetrates everywhere.
As insurance agents, we are trained to provide financial tools and economic solutions to disasters. In the course of our work we meet with clients and find that most of them do not understand the importance of risk management and options to reduce risk.
In a survey we conducted several years ago among our customers, we discovered that a majority of the public thinks insurance on apartments is designed mainly against the damage of burglary, so they calculate whether
insurance is worthwhile, especially if they don't own jewelry or advanced plasma TV sets.
It is important to remember that fire is the main reason for taking out insurance! Fire, as we have seen, once started, does not leave anything behind. After a fire, people need the wherewithal to purchase the basic items that seem cheap and not relevant: closets, bedding, toiletries, kitchen utensils, furniture and more.
During the same survey, customers were asked how much, in their opinion, should it cost to acquire such insurance. The responses may explain why we still have a large public in Israel not covered. They believe such insurance costs about NIS 5,000 per year. (This amount is similar to the average amount paid for compulsory and comprehensive vehicle insurance.) They were surprised to hear that the average cost of apartment and structural insurance (excluding earthquakes) costs even less than compulsory vehicle insurance, and that it is possible to acquire basic coverage against catastrophe for only about NIS1000.
Insurance is acquired against catastrophe. Fire that is out of control creates the catastrophe.
All of us need to do some thinking. Are there any measures at home against fire (fire extinguisher)? Are there water hoses in the building? The cost of these accessories is negligible, but may save lives and reduce damage.
In conclusion, keep in mind that financial coverage can be purchased to ensure rehabilitation after damage, quickly and economically.
*Translated by Elsa Hadar