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Is the security in your estate good enough for your insurer?

05 Nov 2018

Buying within security estates can give buyers the freedom to choose not to live behind bars. Guarded by an external wall and regular security patrols, homeowners often don’t see the need to install extra security measures like burglar bars and alarm systems on homes within gated communities. But are these security estates secure enough for your insurance provider?

While you might not feel the need to install additional security features in your home if you live in an estate, your insurance provider might feel differently.

According to Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, buyers should not assume that their insurance premium will automatically be lower simply because they have moved to a security estate.

“It is always best to ask your insurance provider to find out how the move to your chosen security estate will affect your household and car insurance premiums. These premiums are calculated based on your risk profile, so your insurance provider will need to consider your chosen security estate safe enough that it lowers your risk profile and subsequently decreases your monthly instalments,” says Goslett.

Also read: Security estates don’t guarantee no crime: Homeowner safety tips

So, while you might not feel the need to install additional security features in your home, your insurance provider might feel differently. “Particularly if your security estate happens to be located in a high crime area, you might need to equip your property with its own security features, such as burglar bars, alarm systems, safety gates, and security cameras in order to lower your premiums,” Goslett explains.

“Most car insurers also factor in where your vehicle will be parked overnight in order to calculate what level of risk you carry. If you want to lower your car insurance premiums, parking in the street of your security estate might not be enough to lower your risk profile. You might need to park in a locked garage or behind a gate in order for insurers to lower your premiums,” he adds.

Also read: How safe is the province you're living in?

Beyond this, homeowners should consider installing features to protect their home against other damages such as fire by installing smoke alarms, for example. This might seem like an insignificant addition, but insurers place value on all features which minimise risk.

“Especially considering our current economy that has everybody looking for creative ways to lower their expenses, homeowners should do whatever they can to lower their insurance premiums. Not only will this spare them some cash each month, but these updates will also add value to your property, which translates into higher profits for the day when you eventually decide to sell,” says Goslett.

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