Publication Details

Booth, K. I., Tranter, B. & Eriksen, C. (2015). Properties under fire: why so many Australians are inadequately insured against disaster. The Conversation, 20 November 1-3.

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The fire season has started early. Homes were destroyed last month in bushfires near Lancefield, Victoria, while buildings and lives have been lost as fires continue to sweep through southern Western Australia. Alongside the devastating loss of life and properties, many properties potentially in the path of Australian bushfires are inadequately insured. While we have known about high rates of non-insurance and under-insurance across Australia for some time, there is surprisingly little solid data on the issue. We recently set out to address this gap at both the national and regional level. Early findings from a national survey (which we will be presenting at the 2015 TASA conference later this month) indicate 13% of those surveyed are without insurance cover for their assets - 9% of home owners are without house insurance and 41% of tenants do not have contents insurance. Approximately one-quarter of those who are insured may also be inadequately covered.