Who Is Zurich Insurance?
This short-term insurance company was founded in 1965 and is a subsidiary of the Swiss-based global Zurich Insurance Group Limited. The South African division of Zurich Insurance can be traced right back to the 1800s. Zurich Insurance focuses on the short-term insurance needs of corporate, commercial and individual clients and products are predominantly marketed through agents and brokers. The company specialises in particular in engineering and marine insurance and there are a couple of individually tailored products too such as personal home insurance. According to their website, this company has a Level 3 BBBEE rating. The company is headed by CEO Guy Munnoch who took up the position in 2009.
In The News
The insurance group recently announced a global plan to scale back on 800 jobs this year (2013). The plan is to save on expenditure in order to reduce costs and up their profitability. However, they report that customer-facing activities won’t be affected by the cut-backs. The company is now striving to make its way towards the upper end of the insurance market.
Where to Find Zurich Insurance
Zurich Insurance’s head office can be found at 15 Marshall Street, Ferreirasdorp, Johannesburg 2001.
Zurich Home Insurance
Zurich Insurance offers combined car and home insurance solutions for private customers. The core home insurance covers domestic buildings along with household contents and personal possessions. It is important to note that many insurance companies offer two separate insurance policies: one for ‘building insurance’ (which covers the permanent structure – the actual house and permanent fixtures like the garage or fireplace or cupboards) and one for ‘contents insurance’, also known as house insurance or household insurance which covers mobile/portable items like your TV, computers, furniture, clothes and so on).
Zurich’s Insurance offers three different policies:
- Flexiflite – customers can combine both business and household insurance, directly linking one policy to a Commercial policy;
- Annual Domestic – customers are required to pay the premium in full annually (we assume in exchange for a discounted fee – or else why would anyone select this option?);
- Monthly Domestic – an internet monthly policy for customers wanting to pay their premiums monthly.
Customers are able to customise their policies depending on their needs. Highlights include:
- Automatic veterinarian cover;
- Cover for unauthorised use of credit cards;
- Cover for outdoor items like pool and garden furniture;
- Worldwide All Risk cover for specified items such as cell phones, jewellery and computer equipment – this means that if you include your watch or diamond ring in the policy and this gets stolen (and sometimes even lost) this will be covered by the policy.
Another benefit that they mention is a fast track claims service for home insurance claims under R20,000. What this means, according to their website, is that if you claim for a household item that is covered in the policy and under the value of 20k (your cell phone for example), and subject to you providing the necessary documents, the claim will be processed within 24 hours.
There are also additional, optional, types of cover such as legal plan cover; extended liability and cover for accidental damage.
Zurich Insurance Customer Reviews
According to Hellopeter, in the past year Zurich Insurance has received 86 feedback reports (compared to other insurance companies this is a very low number of reports). Only 3 of those were compliments, meaning there were 83 complaints. The largest amount of complaints revolved around failure to make pay-outs while there were also a great deal of complaints about customer service. On the one hand, this clearly indicates that some work is needed in these areas. On the other hand, 86 reports over the last 12 months is not much which might be a positive indication of their service.
What’s Zurich Insurance’s Website Like?
The company’s website is neatly laid out and easy to navigate. There are brief explanations for each product and readers are prompted to download brochures. It would perhaps be more helpful to have the policy summarised a little better before having to download the brochure (which in itself doesn’t have much factual information about their insurance options and contains mostly statements about how professional they are). The service sections are concise and easy to understand. The site has a comprehensive legal section, download section and even transparent shareholder information. Overall this site is user-friendly and easy to get around. The only key issue with the website is the fact that they do not provide enough information to potential clients looking to get home insurance. The information available is very basic and definitely not enough to make an educated decision about getting their insurance.
The Bottom Line
Zurich Insurance South Africa offers combined car and home insurance. How good a policy they offer is hard to tell due to the limited amount of information they offer on their website. In regards to their level of customer service, based on the relatively high complaints ratio on Hellopeter they still have room for improvement. On the upside, they have been around for a long time and seem to be striving to keep up with the ever-changing short-term insurance market.
Due to the lack of information, our suggestion would be to read about a few other insurance companies that offer home insurance and get a couple of quotes before making your final decision. You can get up to 9 Free quotes by filling in the form above.
Article subject: Zurich Insurance