The insurance of housing, both primary and secondary, hovered around 74% of the total national stock in 2019, according to the report 'Insurance in households', prepared by Unespa. That is, three out of every four properties intended for residential use are protected by insurance in Spain, which indicates a significant penetration of this type of policy. To make matters worse, according to all indications, the pandemic has only stimulated this market.
Intensive use of households
"The Home Care market has seen increased activity since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Forced confinement and mobility restriction measures have resulted in a greater presence in homes and, therefore, greater use of homes. This, in turn, has led to an increase in the frequency of claims and the demand for value-added services," says Eduardo Rodríguez, Commercial and Marketing Director of Asitur. "The implementation of teleworking by many companies has a lot to do with this.
This reality, which brings with it a greater presence in the home, is a new variable that assistance companies will have to consider from now on when analyzing and planning our activity," he says."The Home Assistance market is going through a period of development and transformation," agrees Ricardo Gomar, Director of Alliances and Service Partnerships at Iris Global. "This has been accentuated by the pandemic because it has been a period in which we have made intensive use of our homes, turning them into a work center, a school, a place of leisure. This has led to the need to make adaptations and reforms to adapt the spaces at home to these new uses. New uses of our homes that seem to be maintained over time such as teleworking, which means spending more time at home so that the chances of an accident occurring increase," he says.
Towards digitized services"If we talk about the evolution of this market we cannot fail to mention the technological revolution that has meant the IoT, such as speakers or smart watches, which we have talked about on so many occasions and which is already very present in many homes," abounds Ricardo Gomar, from Iris Global. "A technology in the sights of all market players, mainly assistance companies, which we are already working to integrate it within our claims management processes and assistance services," he stresses. "Nor should we leave behind the evolution of our end customers, the policyholders, who are increasingly demanding in terms of service quality and who are showing us where we need to go. Customers want to be able to contact us at any time and through any channel, and they want to be very well informed about how we are handling their case, so we have to be demanding in terms of information throughout the entire value chain of the claim. We don't just have to repair well anymore. Now it is just as important to provide good information," he says.
Economy and meteorology
"The evolution of Home Assistance will also be determined by the evolution of the branch itself within the general economic environment," they add from Asitur. "In this sense, the Multi-risk business reached premiums of 7,753 million euros during 2020, with a growth of 3.1%, only one point less than in the previous year. And it has done so in the midst of the pandemic and despite the sharp fall in GDP. It is not easy to predict how the industry will behave this year, although what does seem certain is that the economic environment will be somewhat better as those sectors that have been hardest hit by the pandemic begin to recover," he predicts.
"But the variable that will have the greatest impact, as has been the case for some years now, will be determined by the weather conditions that occur," he says. "At the moment, we have started the year with a succession of very intense storms (especially Filomena) that have made January of this year the month with the most claims managed in Asitur, above January 2020, which was already a historic month in terms of volume of claims.Taking all the above into account and analyzing the data of the first six months, we can confirm an increase of more than 14% in the number of claims and assistance provided in 2021 with respect to last year", he underlines.
For Ricardo Gomar, "it is a market that has had to adapt to the continuous changes that we have been experiencing for some years now, such as in the weather, where every year we face the effects of different DANAs that hit very specific regions hard and cause peaks of claims that are very complicated to manage, to major changes in the way we enjoy our homes.All of this is gradually changing the claims profiles we manage.
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