Anyone over his or her life perceives various values, of which health matters most, though certainly not least would be property, ensuring a person a certain comfort to remain healthy. This discreet weighing is fragile and any risk may disturb it to such an extent that, through the fault of an unforeseen natural event or other people, you may lose what not only has financial value for yourself but something you also have a relationship with. Weather extremes that even strike Slovakia frequently enough convince people to count on something happening which you have only read about or seen on television. Property insurance is intended to mitigate such consequences and for our peace of mind.
If you own real estate, you should remember not only home and furnishings but also the structure itself, since a natural disaster could take away what you have been building for years. Insurance coverage for buildings is a definite right all owners of apartments and single-family houses should have.
In the Slovak insurance market, insurance companies provide two basic products to cover a large part of the risk threatening your property. These are, in particular, coverage for the movable objects in a home, i.e. household insurance, and property insurance. This insurance not only covers single-family houses but also any apartment you own yourself. These two basic forms of insurance can be supplemented by further coverage, for example, to insure improvements made in the apartment.
Insuring a building can mean coverage for an apartment or non-residential space, single-family houses, residential units, recreational buildings, garages, accessory buildings and operating buildings, fences and stone walls which you own.
A building can be insured against damage or destruction caused by natural events, meaning a claim can be made for an insurance benefit when the building is damaged or destroyed by fire; explosion; a direct lightning strike; windstorm; flood or deluge, ice; sudden landslide or rockslide or a shift in the ground; avalanche; falling trees, pylons and other objects or an earthquake. The building can also be insured against damage or destruction which may be caused by water leaking from a main or other piping, intake or discharge pipes from a main, liquid or steam escaping from central heating equipment or solar systems, excess pressure from fluid or steam or the impact of frozen water in a pipe or in the case of damage or destruction from other random events, e.g. a vehicle collision, damage to the building from the weight of snow or ice. Along with building insurance, an agreement can also be made for liability insurance for damage caused to someone else and liability insurance as the building’s owner. The building can also be insured against the above risks while it is under construction, where on site construction material is also covered up to three years from the issue of the construction permit.
Coverage is taken out at a new price, i.e. when a building is damaged or destroyed, and the amount corresponding to the cost for repairing or refurnishing the building is paid out, namely for the same type, extent and quality at the given location, without subtracting wear and tear, up to the amount of the agreed insured value. The insurance company provides the owner of an insured structure with an insurance settlement. The insurance benefit for fences and stone walls is at the current price, which is understood to be the new price less the amount corresponding to the level of wear and tear and other depreciation of the building.
Currently, most Slovaks also use funds from building society savings, a building loan or a mortgage to improve their homes. Financial institutions which provide these funds require loans be secured and, in many cases, also have the insurance on the building pledged in favor of the financial institution, so as to be certain that, in the event of an unforeseen event, the insurance company can return the financing extended by the financial institution. In such a case, there is an agreement made between the insured person and the applicable financial institution. Another possibility is to exploit the advantages of cooperation between some banks and insurance companies which offer clients joint products under favorable conditions for providing loans and insurance coverage.
If you decide to have your property insured, select from among the offers made by several different insurance companies, compare the offers and choose for yourself the most favorable coverage and conditions. The addresses of insurance companies serving the Slovak market, who are members of the Slovak Insurance Association, can also be found on the SIA website - www.slaspo.sk. Your specific questions will be answered by trained insurance advisors from every insurance company who insures property. We recommend you study the insurance terms and conditions very carefully and let everything which interests you in relation to coverage be explained. Without any consequences, you should anticipate misunderstandings and be fully satisfied with the property coverage you receive.
You can download in PDF format an informative sample brochure from the Uniqua insurance company. The brochure talks about possibilities to insure real estate.(pdf)