Keeping your home and business safe

Personal Lines

Keeping your home and business safe

Published: 15 October 2015

The recent crime statistics released by the South African Police Services indicated that there has been an 8.5% increase in robberies with aggravating circumstances.  These disturbing figures are mirrored by the claims data of short-term insurer, Santam which shows the following trends:  

  • A 21% increase in reported domestic robbery claims (theft by use of force or violence)
  • A 13% increase in reported business robbery claims 

Fanus Coetzee, head: Adjustment Services at Santam says, “although our claim figures show a decrease in domestic burglaries, there has been an increase in claims reported when it comes to violent and forceful domestic robberies – and this is of concern.” 

Given that many South Africans are at risk to crime, people and communities need to be more aware of their personal safety and make sure they take the necessary steps to safeguard their property and their possessions.

5 Things you can do to make your home safer

  • Be alert and always be aware of what is going in your environment and in your neighbourhood
  • Make sure your doors and windows are secured before leaving your house – and that there is sufficient lighting at night particularly at access or vulnerable points on your property
  • Look out for evidence of suspicious activity
  • Make sure your possessions and valuables are properly insured
  • Join your neighbourhood watch 

Things you can do to keep you vehicle safe

The loss of a vehicle or delivery truck due to theft can also have a detrimental outcome for a family or business and consumers are reminded to safeguard their vehicles too.

  • Car jamming has become the second most commonly used method in the theft of vehicles
  • Do not walk away from your vehicle unless you have heard the buzz / bleep of the remote locking mechanism and before you have physically checked that all doors and your boot are indeed locked. 
  • Fit your car with an immobiliser, alarm or gear-lock. Use more than one anti-theft device to secure your vehicle
  • Never leave valuables in plain sight or on the seats of your vehicle.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings and always park your car in safe and well-lit areas – particularly when going out after dark 

When it comes to insurance cover for your house or car, remember the following:

  • Make sure that your possessions and valuable are properly insured (Items of high value should be specified in your policy)
  • Read the terms and conditions of your policy so that you are aware of what is insured – and what is not
  • Remember to add any recently aquired assets or purchased valuables to your policy
  • Ensure that you have met the conditions set down in your policy.   Your claim will be rejected if your contract requires burglar bars and you don’t have them, your house alarm wasn’t set or your car was stolen but it didn’t have a mobiliser
  • Notify your insurer or broker of any changes to your personal details or change of address. Santam further encourages consumers to always check with their insurer or broker that their policy contracts are up to date and that they are covered accordingly for all their requirements.