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Portable Possessions Insurance Explained


Portable possessions are the valuable items that we carry with us whenever we leave the house. Portable possessions are most at risk. 3% of all crimes that happen in South Africa are street robberies. One cannot claim that their portable possessions are 100% safe with them when leaving their homes.

Street robberies are not the only factors that pose a threat to portable possessions. Hijacking and theft are also major causes of the loss of portable possessions. You need to insure the portable possessions that you walk around with. It can be your everyday items or items that you occasionally carry when you go out. 

You can protect or cover your portable possessions with portable possessions insurance. This insurance cover allows you to handpick valuable items that you go out with and leave those that are not of value out of your policy. You can even include clothes or handbags in your policy. 

Portable Possessions Insurance allows policyholders to insure home contents that individuals take with them every now and then. These will be insured as portable possessions when they are on the road and home contents when they are at home. The premise of such home contents is on the usage. 

What is portable possessions insurance? 

Portable Possessions Insurance is a short-term insurance product that provides a level of financial cover for personal items that you regularly take out of your home. Items that are covered by this insurance product include but are not limited to handbags, laptops, cell phones, watches, jewelry, clothing, and more. 

Portable Possessions Insurance is available from many short-term insurance companies in South Africa. The aim of the product is to protect your personal belongings while you are on the go. The protection comes as a replacement or repair of the possessions that may have been damaged or stolen.

Types of portable possessions insurance 

Portable Possessions Insurance comes in two options to choose from. The two options available are designed to cover items based on the value they possess. Covers that are available include unspecified portable possessions cover and specified portable possessions cover. 

The two types of portable possessions covers are explained below. 

Unspecified Portable Possessions Cover

Unspecified Portable Possessions cover is for those ever-changing items that you carry or wear daily. This cover lets you choose from available limits per item and/or the total sum insured for all items. Limits set differ per insurance company. 

With unspecified portable possessions, you won’t be required to list the items that you intend to insure individually. Limits that you choose from will be set by your insurer. The maximum payout amount will also be issued by the insurer. 

This cover is for items that are not expensive. However, it covers a wide range of belongings. Because of the maximum amount limit, you need to make sure that you are covered for the right amount. Making precise valuations will help you to be covered for the right value. Therefore, you won’t be over-covered nor under-covered under this insurance product. 

Specified Portable Possessions Cover

Specified Portable Possessions cover is an insurance product that covers the most valuable portable possessions that you normally take with you when going outside your property. Unlike unspecified cover, the specified cover entails that policyholders must list items that they want to insure and the value of the item must be quoted down. 

Your insurance company will give you the minimum amount under this cover. The minimum amount is for the value of an item that can be insured under this cover, however, items must not be less than the specified minimum value. Minimum amounts differ per insurer. 

Valuation of items is at your discretion so it is likely to make wrong valuations. The insurer will only pay the exact value of your asset insured, therefore, if you have been paying high premiums, your insurer will pay the value deemed reasonable for the insured item and won’t pay more This means that you will be over-insured if you overstate the value of your listed portable possessions. 

Make sure that you use a SABS (South African Bureau of Standard) certified evaluator if you are to make use of an external evaluator. External evaluation will provide you with precise or close to precise estimations than estimations made by yourself using limited knowledge.

Items that are not listed will not be covered. You can make claims on items that are listed. When purchasing this product make sure that you understand what you are not and what you are indemnified for.

What to consider when buying portable possessions insurance

There are a few things that you need to consider when purchasing portable possessions insurance. You need to do some research so that you can get the best of your premiums. Plus, it will assist you to avoid getting sloppy in your cover decisions which will save you money in the long run. 

Here are things to consider when buying a portable possessions insurance 

  • Choosing between unspecified or specified portable possessions insurance covers. 
  • Claiming process. Claiming process will differ from one insurer to another, therefore, you will need to do some homework to get the claiming period and process that you want. 
  • Possessions to include and exclude to your cover. You may not need to include all your portable possessions on your cover. To save money and get value for money, you need to cover things that you cannot risk losing or that you won’t be able to replace in an instant. 
  • Cover limits should be considered. The cover limit differs per insurer. 
  • Excess that you may need when making a claim to pay. 
  • Whether or not you are covered in South Africa and the rest of the world. 

Conclusion 

The portable possessions insurance gives you a shield that you need should your portable possessions get stolen or lost. There may be many exclusions on your cover based on the insurer that you use. Know exactly what you are not covered for to avoid the errors of losing your portable assets caused by unsuccessful claims.

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Lethabo Ntsoane

Lethabo Ntsoane holds a Bachelors Degree in Accounting from the University of South Africa. He is a Financial Product commentator at Rateweb. He is an expect financial product analyst with years of experience in reviewing products and offering commentary. Lethabo majors in financial news, reviews and financial tips. He can be contacted at [email protected]

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