Advice and Opinion

Don't give insurance company a chance to reject claim

While there has been much talk of all the compliance certificates (electricity, water, etc) needed for the sale of a home, there is an increasing number of people using gas in their homes, whether a stove in the kitchen or gas fireplace, but they do not have up to date gas compliance certificates, and from their experience in selling these homes, when the sellers are asked if there is a gas certificate, there isn’t one, says Lanice Steward, managing director of Knight Frank Residential SA.

A little known fact though, is that if there were to be a fire in a home with a gas installation in it, if there is no up to date compliance certificate, the insurance company could possibly reject the claim, warned Steward.

The majority of insurance companies would require this certificate to prove that the installation was safe and has been serviced regularly, she said.

According to an insurance consultant consulted on this topic, gas certificates should be renewed every year, and all the safety aspects of keeping gas in a home, need to be adhered to strictly, she said.

Gas canisters must be in a metal cage if they stand outside and if any gas canisters are left unattended in a holiday home or garage – these must be empty or should rather be taken away from the premises if the home is to be empty for a time, advised Steward.

If there is maintenance or repair work done to a gas appliance, the owner of the home should make sure they use an accredited gas company, who is registered with LPGSA (Liquid Petroleum Gas Safety Association) and the person that does the actual repair needs to be registered too, said Steward.

As with gas, electrical compliance certificates are also needed to ensure safety compliance, said Steward, but these certificates need only be renewed every two years. Any electrical repair work or maintenance must also be accompanied by a certificate of compliance.

“These inspections would only cost in the region of R250,” said Steward, “and although the chances are very slight that there would be such an incident in a home, the chance is still there. Rather have the certificates needed to protect yourself and ensure that if you need to claim from your insurance for fire damage, there is little chance of it being rejected.”


This information is published for general information purposes and is not intended to constitute legal advice. Specialist legal advice should always be sought in relation to any particular situation. Property Wheel will accept no responsibility for any actions taken or not taken on the basis of this publication.

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