Keep your assets safe in your absence
At PPS Short-Term Insurance, we pride ourselves on our ability to provide Intelligent Insurance For Graduate Professionals; personalised, tech-enabled solutions that meet your professional standards and needs. But let’s face it, no matter how modern or comprehensive our service offering, the most intelligent claim is the one that you don’t have to file in the first place.
That becomes especially true around this time of year, when the holidays start and we all want to focus the extra time we have on the loved ones in our lives. Maybe it’s a by-product of the merriment of the season and our rush to enjoy every moment of our precious holiday time, but this time of year unfortunately also sees increases in accidents, oversights and losses of particular sorts. Often, with a bit more care and foresight, these damages could have been mitigated or even entirely prevented.
It’s a boon to know that you have a reliable, professional insurer in your corner, but if you can avoid having to call us, it probably means you’re having a better festive season.
With that said, and with the festive disruptions of the holiday season just around the corner, it seems an apt time to share a few tips for keeping your assets safe so that you can enjoy your holidays with peace of mind.
Protect your vehicle
Whether you’re taking travelling with it or leaving it at home, spare a thought for the security of your car this Christmas. Ensure that your vehicle insurance policy is up-to-date, and exercise good sense.
According to sources like Cartrack and News24, November through January are high-risk months for vehicle-related crimes. And of course, we’re all familiar with the reports of high-speed collisions that always seem to increase to horrifying quantities around this time every year.
With that in mind, consider the following tips for mitigating risk to your vehicle (as well as to its priceless occupants) this holiday season:
- Don’t drink and drive: it is said a lot, and for good reason. Not only would you not be able to claim for an accident you are involved in while under the influence, but it is simply an unnecessary risk to yourself and everyone else on the road. Call an uber or arrange a designated driver, but don’t get behind the wheel when you’re a few drinks deep.
- Plan rest stops: If you’re driving long distance, plan regular rest stops, or split the trip in two and spend the night at a bed and breakfast along the way. Fatigue makes bad drivers of us all, and it is easily avoided if you plan your trip.
- Know the crime hot-spots: If you’re travelling locally or to neighbouring countries in your own vehicle, do some research in advance. Find out where the crime hot-spots are, which areas provide safe parking and which areas are better not to leave your car unattended in at all.
- How does your cover travel?: If you are planning to cross the border in your own car, do you know if you are still covered in the the destination country? (Contact PPS STI to find out if our cover is sufficient for your travel plans).
- Make sure it’s safe at home: If your car isn’t travelling with you, park it inside and under cover so that it is protected from the elements. If you can, keep it out of sight so that it is not a tempting target. Consider leaving a spare key with a friend, in case of emergencies while you are away.
Protect Your Home
While you’re away on holiday, your unoccupied home can become an attractive target for the criminal element. Moreover, your absence could prevent the timeous filing of home insurance claims for unforeseen damages that might occur while you’re away.
You don’t want to spend your holiday worrying about what might be going wrong at home, so keep the following in mind and make sure that you are able to make the most of your downtime:
- Inform the neighbours: if you’re on good terms with your neighbours, let them know that you’ll be gone and for how long. Give them the numbers at which you can be reached while you’re away, and ask them to keep an eye on your home.
- Have a friend stop in while you’re away: Give a set of keys to a friend or neighbour that you trust. Someone might need access to your house in the case of an emergency.
- Make your home appear occupied: Make your house a less attractive target by making it look like someone is still around, keeping an eye on things. Automated lights; arranging with a friend to have your mailbox regularly emptied; or hiring a house-sitter are some ways to achieve this.
- Checklist all of your doors and windows: Check and double-check all potential points of entry, and make sure that they have been locked or otherwise secured.
Protect your business
If you’re closing up shop and taking a well-earned break for Christmas and New Year, keep in mind that your business premises are potentially vulnerable during this time of reduced activity. Don’t let the merriment of the season distract you from the importance of keeping your livelihood safe.
Think about taking the following actions, to increase security during this time of reduced staff presence:
- Secure all valuables: Consult with your business insurance policy and be sure to secure items of value according to its stipulations. Lock valuable equipment away and out of sight, or leave easily moveable items with employees – if appropriate by the terms of your policy – rather than in unattended offices.
- Checklist all of your doors and windows: As you would with your home, check and double-check all potential points of entry, and make sure that they have been locked or otherwise secured.
- Test your security systems: In the month leading up to the annual close of business, take the time to test your security protocols. Make sure that your panic buttons are alerting your security service; that your motions sensors activate the alarms; and that the CCTV system is recording. Alert your neighbours and security services to the fact that you will be performing these tests.
Ultimately, some events are preventable and some are impossible to see coming. While we obviously encourage you to proactively prevent the perils you can, a firmer peace of mind comes from being covered even against the unforeseen.
Contact PPS Short-Term Insurance and find out how we can help your merriment this season, by providing the peace of mind that only comes from comprehensive, intelligent cover.