Insurance to Protect Your Home From Fires

All About HDB Fire Insurance

On 6 September 2021, the fire breakout at Telok Blangah saw over a hundred residents evacuated. Pictures of the blackened corridor and charred remains of plant pots were all that was left. The fire was fuelled by cardboard boxes, furniture and other items which cluttered the common corridor unit.

Perhaps a few important lessons can be gleaned from this incident: don’t accumulate clutter along the corridor, don’t take fire hose reel cabinets in the apartment block for granted, and most importantly, get fire insurance.

According to the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF), they responded to 1,877 fire calls in 2020. Fires by electrical origin were the leading cause of fires (29% of all cases), followed by fires caused by overheating food (22% of all cases).

If the above statistics are alarming to you, ask yourself: are you sufficiently protected against fire accidents at home?

Owners of HDB flats might remember purchasing compulsory fire insurance when buying their homes. However, the coverage for that is not nearly as comprehensive as home insurance. So if this is the only fire insurance you have, there is probably much more you can do to prepare for the worst, and comprehensive home insurance could be the way to go.

But what exactly is the compulsory fire insurance that you bought?

Since 2019, FWD has been appointed as the insurer for all fire insurance sold to HDB flats. This means that every HDB flat purchase requires a mandatory HDB fire insurance purchase from FWD. Remember that the HDB fire insurance is only valid for a period of five years. Once it expires, you will need to do your own renewal of the HDB fire insurance.

Luckily, there are a few ways to ensure that the renewal of HDB fire insurance is as seamless as possible. With the advancement of technology, renewing/purchasing HDB fire insurance could be done through FWD’s website. You can also buy your insurance via any AXS kiosk. Alternatively, if you prefer a face-to-face meet up with an FWD representative instead, you can also head over to their physical office.

The cost of HDB fire insurance will be reviewed periodically by HDB. From 16 August 2019 to 15 August 2024, the 5-year premium and sum assured is listed below:

HDB Flat Type HDB Fire Insurance 5-Year Premium HDB Fire Insurance Sum Insured
1-room $1.62 $29,000
2-room / Studio Apartment $2.71 $48,700
3-room $4.87 $60,400
4-room $5.94 $82,000
5-room $7.13 $97,300
Executive $8.10 $106,200

As such, fire insurance is indeed very affordable, amounting to at most a couple of dollars annually. However, it is important to recognise that such low fees are for a good reason – HDB fire insurance only covers the cost of reinstating damaged internal structures, fixtures, areas built by HDB. Your furniture, any renovations completed and personal belongings are not covered.

Alternatively, if you desire to protect the items most important to you in your home, it is more appropriate to seek home insurance instead.