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Insurance: one critical cost for homeowners


Roisin Broderick, Content Specialist, Keystart

4 min

Protect your home

We’ve talked before about the costs of running a home. In addition to the significant outlay for utility bills and living expenses, there is one critically important cost that you must factor into owning your own home – and that is the cost of home insurance.

Consider the awful consequence of losing your home and the daunting prospect of rebuilding and establishing yourself. Aside from losing clothing, furniture and your personal treasures, there would be the very real, very immediate issue of housing your family and getting life back on track.

Now picture that scenario with no building or contents insurance.  With no insurance to cover these costs, you risk losing everything apart from the land under your feet.

What is covered in building and contents insurance?

Building insurance, also referred to as home insurance, insures the actual building that makes up your home, and covers damage to your home in some situations. Each provider’s policy will vary in what repairs or damage will be covered. Contents insurance insures your belongings in your home. Most providers offer a combined building and contents package.

3 types of insurance in this area:

 

Shop around for a good deal

Keystart does not provide home or contents insurance but there are a wealth of insurance providers in the market.

Compare different providers when looking for insurance. Different providers offer varying excesses (the amount you need to cover if you are making a claim) and features. Many providers are now covering contents in transit, for example, a lost or stolen phone may be covered in your contents insurance.

Packaging home and contents insurance will usually get you a discount too.

Keystart recommends you obtain your own independent financial advice on what insurance and products are right for you.

How much insurance?

Building insurance coverage should be enough to cover the cost to clear the block, rebuild your home and provide for temporary accommodation during this period, if the worst case scenario ever happened.  A common misconception of home insurance is insuring the property for the total market value however land does not need to be insured. Even if a home burns down, the land is still there, only the building would be lost.

If you are not sure of how much to insure the property for, there are many tools and calculators online to assist you.

What Keystart requires

If you have a home loan with Keystart, it is a requirement that your property must be adequately covered with building insurance. This protects your home and offers some protection to Keystart too. Insurance is an ongoing condition of your loan with Keystart, meaning you need to ensure you always have a current building insurance policy in place, with Keystart noted as your lender. If you change your insurance provider, you are required to let us know too.

Keystart clients must select an insurance provider that is on the Register approved by Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA). See the link at the bottom of this post. 

Each year you will need to provide us with a Certificate of Currency from your building insurance provider. This is a standard document that all insurers can provide which states the insurance company, policy number, sum insured for building and period of insurance. As the property is secured by your loan, Keystart must be noted as the interested party.

If you have a shared ownership loan the Housing Authority must be noted as co-policyholder. If you have a strata-titled property, the building is likely to be insured as a whole. Keystart still requires confirmation that this insurance is in place and you will need to provide a Certificate of Currency. Your strata company, sometime referred to as body corporate, will be able to provide this to you.

Many insurers have an online form to request a Certificate of Currency - making it easy to get a new Certificate each year. 

How to update your insurance details with Keystart

If you have already have the Certificate of Currency at home, send it on to us. If not, give your insurance company a quick call to request it to be sent directly to us. Remember we will need a current certificate each year. 

To update your insurance details, you can

  • email the new certificate to us via customer@keystart.com.au, or
  • post the updated certificate to Keystart, or
  • update this information yourself on our Client Portal and send us a copy of the certificate so we can keep a record on your file, or
  • contact your insurance company and ask them to send the certificate directly to us via email at customer@keystart.com.au

Need some help choosing an insurer?

ASIC money smart website has a few tips on choosing a home insurance policy

Keystart clients must choose an insurance provider listed on the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) register of general insurers authorised to conduct new or renewal business in Australia.

Got a question?

If you have any questions about Keystart's insurance requirement, you can give us a call on 1300 578 278 or contact us via our enquiry form.

Keystart recommends that you seek your own independent financial advice prior to making any decisions about your financial needs. Any examples given in this post are provided for illustrative purposes only.

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