...
Top
female-employee- holding a yellow house model offering-domestic package-to-client-

Home insurance or domestic package is always among the top insurance policies I recommend one to include in their financial plan. As always, remember that insurance is a risk management tool that cushions you against financial losses culminating from unexpected events in life. Think of events like theft, fire, water, and flooding. They might not occur. But if they do, the losses can be too much to bare. 

 

I honestly never thought much about having this insurance. Until I started to get serious about my financial planning. That’s when I couldn’t afford to replace some items, like my phone, in case of theft. That’s usually a sudden event and gets you unprepared. And, if you are like me, you probably get your gadgets with the hope of using them for at least 3 to 5 years before thinking of a replacement. By then, you can start a sinking fund for purchasing the replacement. Now, imagine if, between that period, your phone is damaged or lost. Or a burglary occurs in your apartment, leaving you with no household goods. 

 

A week ago, I started talking about my experience making a claim with Britam for one of my phones. It’s an ongoing process as of writing and publishing this article. So, if you are here from the future, LOL, you can check my IG post as I’ll keep updating my experience and final verdict on my claim. 

 

 

Now, that post led to a few questions about home insurance. I’ve talked about the benefits of home insurance before. 

 

But now, let’s talk a bit more about home insurance, which you might also find some insurers referring to as a domestic package. I will mostly focus on who can get it, what items are covered, and the most common perils insurers will insure you or your property against. 

 

You Don’t Need To Be A Homeowner to Have This Insurance

A common misconception is that you must be a homeowner to get the domestic package. Well, that’s not true. Even if you are living in a rental house, you can get domestic package coverage to protect what YOU OWN. 

 

And this is important to note because a domestic package can be pretty affordable and customisable. Since home insurance is among the key risk management tools you should have, it’s important to consider getting it even if you are a tenant.  

 

But what does it cover? Let’s dive right in and get you convinced. 

 

Related post: 8 Tips For Choosing The Right Insurance Company in Kenya

 

Here’s What Your Domestic Package Policy Will Cover

Regardless of what insurer you choose to use, I have found that many of the providers in Kenya will provide coverage for these 5 items;

 

1. Buildings 

Buildings under the domestic package usually refer to the primary structure of your home and outbuildings. This cover pays to repair or rebuild your home if it’s damaged by covered perils. 

 

The building’s structures are insured against several events, which may vary between insurance companies. However, you can expect coverage from the below perils;

 

  • Fire
  • Explosions, e.g., gas cylinders or volcanoes 
  • Theft from forced entry or exit
  • Wind, storms, or flooding
  • Natural disasters, e.g., lightning, earthquakes, or a storm
  • Human causes, e.g., malicious damage by anyone who is not a member of your household or damage from political riots, strikes and civil commotion 
  • Water, e.g., burst/overflowing pipes, water tanks, and other apparatus 
  • Aircraft or other aerial items dropping into the structure 
  • The impact from vehicles, animals, falling trees/branches, or aerial fittings, e.g., satellite dishes

 

Besides this, some insurers will cover or offer living expenses as an add-on. This means that you will pay an extra amount for this coverage. In return, your insurer covers accommodation expenses if you have to move out of your home during repairs or renovations arising from the covered perils. 

 

2. Contents

Coverage for contents will extend to any furniture, household items, and personal effects you or anyone else residing in your home owns. 

 

That means you can insure your kitchen appliances, television and audio sets, dining sets, expensive couches and other household goods that would set you back a few Kenya thousand shillings for repair or replacement. The insurance company may offer to repair or replace the insured property. 

 

Your contents are insured against several events, which may vary between insurance companies. However, you can expect coverage from the below perils;

 

  • Fire
  • Explosions, e.g., gas cylinders or volcanoes 
  • Theft from forced entry or exit
  • Wind, storms, or flooding
  • Natural disasters, e.g., lightning, earthquakes, or a storm
  • Human causes, e.g., malicious damage by anyone who is not a member of your household or damage from political riots, strikes and civil commotion 
  • Water, e.g., burst/overflowing pipes, water tanks, and other apparatus 
  • Aircraft or other aerial items dropping into the structure 
  • The impact from vehicles, animals, falling trees/branches, or aerial fittings, e.g., satellite dishes

 

On compensation, most insurance companies will have a limit based on the item’s value. To ensure you are well covered;

 

  • Take inventory of all your contents.
  • Keep a list and photos of the items, including the serial numbers, where available. 
  • Have receipts or other official documentation. 

 

These will help you estimate the value of your items. Plus, in case you have to make a claim, you will need proof of ownership and even the cost of the item.

 

Here’s a tip, because receipts can get lost or the letters might be illegible over time, always take photos or scanned copies of these documents and store them on the cloud. 

 

A mans hand pick pocketing a smartphone from a a young man who is sitting smiling at their laptop with their backpack wide open

 

3. All Risk 

You might be wondering why I have yet to mention your laptop or mobile phone by now. That’s because these fall under the All Risk category.

 

The All Risk category covers the loss or damage of all your portable items, including mobile phones, laptops, cameras, tablets, radios, jewellery, and sporting items, e.g., golfing items. The most common perils you are insured against include;

 

  • Theft
  • Fire 
  • Riot and strike
  • Breakage 

 

So, what does the insurer offer? Most insurance companies will either;

 

  • Repair, reinstate or replace the item that’s lost or damaged on its own, or 
  • Pay you cash in lieu of the amount of the damage or loss.

 

Now, these items can be tricky to claim. That’s where the long list of exemptions comes in. In most cases, insurance companies will provide a list of perils they will not cover, even if they cause loss or damage to your insured property. 

 

When reviewing a policy document, check for any list under the term ‘exclusions.’ These might also vary between insurers but will mainly include;

 

  • Normal wear and tear, depreciation, rust/atmospheric conditions, or damage from insects and moths 
  • Loss of damage occurring outside of territorial limits 
  • Electrical damage
  • Damage during repairs, dyeing, or application of heat   
  • Theft or attempted theft by members of your household 
  • During transit, unless accompanied by you or a member of your household 
  • Scratched lenses 

 

This list is not comprehensive. And, as stated, the list of exclusions will depend on your insurer. So, before signing off on that domestic package policy, ensure you have read and are okay with the list of exclusions regarding the All Risk items. 

 

As with the contents policy above, ensure you keep proper records of your gadgets. That includes photos, serial numbers, receipts, or any documentation proving ownership. For example, I had to attach images and copies of the receipt when making a claim for my phone. 

 

4. Domestic Employees 

Do you have domestic employees? Think of your house manager, the gardener, the security guard or the driver. Think of what would happen if they sustained injuries, illnesses or even death while on duty or if any of these arose out of the work they do for you. You will likely be liable and have to cough out some money to pay for several costs. 

 

That’s where this policy comes in handy. This policy will cater to the following;

 

  • Your employee’s medical expenses
  • Compensation arising from occupational illnesses 
  • Permanent disability or death 
  • The employee’s funeral expenses
  • Replacement costs of their personal effects arising from theft 

 

angry-aggressive-mixed-breed-dog-dog-bites-a-leg-off

 

5. Owner’s/Occupier’s Liability

Can you be sued if a third party incurs injuries or loss of their property while on your home or a place you’re renting? 

 

Yes, you can.

 

I definitely went through the internet rabbit hole searching for such cases in Kenya and read a little bit more on liability cases in Kenya. It’s a lot of reading, but this article on the law on occupiers’ liability in Kenya provides a great summary if you are in a hurry. 

 

Back to this coverage, if you are sued and are liable for a third party’s bodily harm or property damage, your insurer will step in if you have this coverage. The policy will cover;

 

  • Medical costs
  • Legal fees

 

Additionally, you are insured against accidental damages you might cause to other people’s property. For example, if you accidentally damage your rental house and the property owner sues you. 

 

The exemptions to the policy are usually;

 

  • Bodily harm to members of your household or your employees 
  • Property damage to items belonging to any members of your employees 

 

By the way, some insurers will also provide coverage for any damages or bodily harm your pets might cause. Search online, and you will see some cases in Kenya where people have sued for dog bites. I was curious about this, so I asked my insurance agent about it. And the answer was yes; this liability coverage can apply. Provided the victim was bitten while in your home or compound. 

 

Is It a Must To Have All The Above?

Absolutely not! And that’s why I previously mentioned that you can get a domestic package even if you do not own the home or apartment you currently reside in. Insurance companies will usually customise your coverage based on your needs. 

 

For instance, if you were living in a rental, you do not need coverage for the building. But you might want to have your household items and gadgets insured. In that sense, the insurance company will only provide coverage against these. 

 

In Conclusion

If you are serious about your financial success, I recommend taking risk management very seriously. That includes having a domestic package as part of your risk management tools. It doesn’t matter if you are a tenant. As long as you know any sudden damage or loss of your gadgets and household items will cause you significant financial losses you cannot bear alone. 

 

Once you have the coverage, ensure that you keep the list of your insured property up to date. Whenever you buy or dispose of an item, either add it or remove it from the list of insured items. This will either increase or decrease your premium amount. However, you do not have to wait until it’s time to renew your premiums to make the necessary changes. Especially if you have bought a new gadget or appliance. You can always contact your insurance agent to add these to your list of covered items.  

 

Finally, pay close attention to all the details of your policy. Although the domestic packages most insurance companies in Kenya have cover these items, the exclusions may vary from one insurer to the other. It’s IMPORTANT that you understand what your policy says. 

DISCLOSURE: THE INFORMATION PROVIDED TO MY READERS IS GENUINE AND PRECISE TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE. THE LINKS PROVIDED IN THIS ARTICLE DO NOT BELONG TO ANY AFFILIATE PARTNERS AND I AM NOT PAID FOR THEM. THE ARTICLE OFFERS GENERAL INFORMATION AND SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL ADVICE OR HELP THAT CATERS TO YOUR INDIVIDUAL FINANCIAL GOALS. KINDLY SEEK HELP AND ADVICE FROM YOUR FINANCIAL ADVISOR FOR PERSONALISED ADVICE AND HELP. ANY ACTION TAKEN BASED ON THIS INFORMATION IS AT YOUR OWN RESPONSIBILITY AND RISK. 

post a comment

Seraphinite AcceleratorBannerText_Seraphinite Accelerator
Turns on site high speed to be attractive for people and search engines.