Santam has published its Insurance Barometer report, which highlights the state of the insurance industry in South Africa.
The report is based up feedback from various stakeholders – including 150 intermediaries, 400 corporate and commercial entities, and 401 personal insurance consumers.
This research provides valuable insight into how the insurance industry has been affected by the national lockdown, and details prominent trends in South Africa.
Personal insurance remains a priority
Santam’s research shows that 80% of consumers have had their finances affected in a negative way by the COVID-19 pandemic, and this has brought the affordability of insurance into the limelight.
“It should come as no surprise then that the pandemic-induced shift to working from home has had a material impact on the shape of the personal insurance landscape,” explained Santam Head of Personal Lines Underwriting Attie Blaauw and Head of Claims Adjustment Services Fanus Coetzee.
However, the report found that South Africans are generally not cutting down on their short-term insurance costs – as they know that protecting their valuable assets is a top priority.
While South Africans are sticking with their personal insurance products, there have been vast changes to their claiming patterns.
For example, vehicle insurance claims have dropped by 18% – even as the cost of spares for repairs has increased significantly due to supply issues.
This is because of South Africans driving their cars far less, which is why Santam has introduced a mileage-based affordable car insurance product – SmartPark.
SmartPark is designed to save you up to 20% on your car insurance premium if you are on the road less frequently due to remote working.
Your premium discount is based on how many kilometres you expect to travel within your annual policy renewal period, with these discount bands comprising 0-5,000 km, 5,001-10,000 km, and 10,001-15,000 km per annum.
This means you get cheap car insurance that suits your remote working lifestyle.
Building and households claims both rose significantly, although this was not due to crime. Burst geysers were the biggest culprit and Santam speculates this could be down to remote working.
“People showering and bathing more often increases wear-and-tear on geysers, which could be one possible explanation for this anomaly,” said Blaauw.
Thankfully Santam has partnered with Sensor Networks to develop smart-geyser devices that automatically turn off the water and electricity should a geyser leak, burst, or blow.
This affordable property insurance product is of major benefit to Santam customers who choose to take advantage of it, as it not only affects your geyser, but also covers your home’s contents against excessive water damage.
South Africans want affordable personal insurance
Santam’s research shows that South Africans want more information about how claims behaviour impacts their premiums – data that Santam already offers its personal lines customers.
This information ranges from SMS updates that inform customers when risks are heightened, to crime statistics for different areas and locations.
Insurance providers are therefore focused on providing more cost-effective insurance, in line with the desires of South African customers.
Santam Insurance Barometer report
The information detailed above is a sample of the in-depth Barometer Report, which provides more details about the insurance industry across its different markets.
Whether you’d like to learn more about trends in car insurance, property insurance, home contents cover, or another insurance product category, the Santam Insurance Barometer report has the answers you’re looking for.