By: Marius Steyn, Personal Lines Underwriting Manager at Santam
Valentine’s Day is one of the most commercialised days on the global calendar. Each year billions of rands are spent on expensive gifts. In 2018, South Africa’s online gift and flower delivery business, NetFlorist, grew by 1,400% in the run-up to Valentine’s Day as more than 200,000 red rose stems were ordered.
Marius Steyn, Personal Lines Underwriting Manager at Santam says: “Valentine’s Day is regarded the same as a birthday, anniversary, or a wedding/engagement day, therefore the gifts are treated in the same manner in terms of insurance policies. Consumers are always advised to seek counsel from their broker when receiving any new valuable item.”
Whether it’s a diamond engagement ring, the dream car you’ve been dying to drive or any flashy expensive pair of shoes, hold your horses before you start showing off to your loved ones and friends. After delivering your thank you speech, don’t forget to protect the gift with the correct insurance. If you already have a household content insurance, talk to your broker for advice on how you can insure your gift.
Steyn shares some tips on how you can cover your gift and have peace of mind if anything were to happen to it.
- Adequate household content insurance: Ensure your household contents insurance is always sufficient to avoid being under insured in the event of a claim.
- Insurance for items that are not always within the confinement of the home i.e. jewellery: Many people ask if such items would be insured under the all risks section for clothing and personal effects. Such items are only limited to 20% of the total sum insured of Clothing and Personal effects. Should an item, normally worn or carried by or on a person, exceed 20% limitation it would be best to specify the item under the all risks section of the policy to ensure it enjoys worldwide cover.
- When is the right time to insure your gift? It is always advisable to inform your insurer of any valuable additional items purchased in your home. The insured amount of your contents is an estimated amount, so unless the item is not of a great value the value of your entire content needs not to be increased, if not the sum insured of your contents needs to be increased with the value of the item. With expensive gifts consider whether the value insured for household contents is not sufficient, in that case one should consider specifying the item under the all risks section of the policy which would comprise an additional premium.
- What to do if your precious gift is stolen/ broken before you insure it, will it be covered? It will be covered, but under insurance could be applicable and in that case the full value of the item would not be covered and then only a percentage or proportional share of the loss or damage will be covered and the client will be responsible for the shortfall.
- Can you insure a sentimental gift: Unfortunately, sentimental value is not insurable but the gift can be insured at its actual replacement value.
Steyn concludes that as the person receiving the gift, it’s best to get your own policy as soon as possible if you do not already have one. If you decide on having one policy between you and your new partner, but you’re not the main policyholder, remember that if you’re the additional insured, it’s up to your partner to pay you in the event of a claim, which could get difficult if you’re not together any more.