Affected by the Bushfires? If you have bushfire insurance, your prized possessions along with your house are covered for all the damages and destruction that take place, up to the chosen sum insured. Australia has been described as the land of droughts and flooding rains. Bushfires occur in the continent during the droughts and heat waves. Insurance for bushfire protects your home and belongings from bushfire and grassfires too. If the client is living in a bushfire prone area, he has to make sure that a sufficient amount is insured for his house in case it burns down completely.
What is a Bushfire?
Bushfire is a fire that burns in grass, scrub, bush or forests. It is also known as wildfire. Some of the common causes of a bushfire are lightning, arcing from power lines, arson, controlled burn escapes or accidental ignitions from cigarettes or non-extinguished campfires. Local topography also influences the threat to bushfires. The houses in steep forested areas are more severely affected than those along the flat and grassy areas.
Calculating the Risk
In Australia, a house’s susceptibility to a bushfire is measured with the Bushfire Attack Level (BAL). BAL measures the severity of a building’s exposure to ember attack, radiant heat or direct flame contact. Standards have been set by the governing bodies to determine the construction requirements of homes in a bushfire prone area. The standard aims at reducing the risk of a building being ambushed in a bushfire. It is critical to take into account this standard when calculating the cost of rebuilding a home. The sum insured has to correspond to it; otherwise the house may end up being underinsured. On the other hand, if your house is not in a bushfire prone area, the construction requirements are not necessary and they do not play a factor in the sum insured.
If a building’s BAL is high, the construction requirements become more stringent which cover floors, roofs, external walls, windows, the veranda and the carports. BAL is calculated by two methods. The simple method is suitable for most sites wherein the vegetation is set on flat grounds. It involves finding out the Fire Danger Index, Classified vegetation type, distance from the vegetation and slope of the ground under the vegetation. The other method is used for sites with limited setbacks to vegetation, located on a hilly ground.
Insurance that covers bushfires covers the customer on the basis of the distance of his house from a bush land. If you wish to get an accurate estimate, it is best to contact an architect, builder, quantity surveyor, value provider or a qualified professional. It will include the checking of your building’s BAL if it is designated in a bush fire prone area. Bushfire insurance may also include additional benefits such as temporary accommodation, debris removal, extra rebuilding costs and disposal and storage of the contents. For an additional premium, the client can even update his insurance cover for other accidental damages as well.
Get in touch with iSelect for any bushfire insurance requirements as the company offers attractive and affordable premiums.