North Queensland homeowners rewarded for cyclone resilience
18 May 2017
One year on from the launch of the Cyclone Resilience Benefit, more than 23,000 Suncorp customers in north Queensland’s three main cities have been rewarded with reduced insurance premiums.
Customers are taking advantage of Suncorp’s Protecting the North initiative by reporting a range of simple improvements like roof upgrades, covered windows, stronger doors, maintenance and basic cyclone season preparation.
Many policyholders have had their premiums cut by hundreds of dollars through the resilience measures, which are proven to reduce home and property damage in the event of a cyclone.
Suncorp Insurance CEO Anthony Day said the Cyclone Resilience Benefit had exceeded Suncorp’s expectations since its launch a year ago.
“More than 31,000 Suncorp customers in north Queensland have received our Cyclone Resilience Benefit,” Mr Day said.
“Homeowners should be rewarded for putting effective safeguards in place to fend off the impacts of a cyclone. The Benefit is the best example of the industry playing its role.
“This helps build safer communities, fosters economic development and improves insurance affordability.”
Mr Day said Suncorp developed its Protecting the North initiative after commissioning research, conducted by James Cook University’s Cyclone Testing Station, to better understand the impact of cyclones on homes and how to address weaknesses.
“What we found was that some simple, low-cost upgrades can pay for themselves after just one major Yasi-like cyclone.
“Price reflects risk and we know the high risk of cyclone damage is a key driver of premiums in the north.”
Suncorp stands by a series of government inquiries and reviews, which have all found that the best way to lower the cost of insurance is to invest it mitigation.
The Northern Australia Insurance Premiums Taskforce also supported Suncorp’s view on mitigation, saying it was the only sustainable way to reduce premiums. Protecting the North also recently won a Resilient Australia award.
“Suncorp will continue to advocate for a government-sponsored retrofit scheme to help create jobs, grow the economy, make the community more resilient and address insurance affordability in north Queensland,” Mr Day said.