Eight years ago on September, Tropical Storm Ondoy destroyed most of Luzon, submerging even the country’s capital in flood at record-breaking levels.
Remembering then, the tremendous rainfall and unusually strong wind made husband decide not to report for work that day. My mother, on the other hand, who lives in Novaliches, Quezon City, was on her way to a wake. She went back home when she got all wet because of the rain. Little did she know it was more of a blessing and not a waste of time.
The event that changed history
My mother experienced for the first time the highest height of flood. Houses on the opposite side of the street (near the Tullahan River) have been submerged in deep floodwaters. My mom recalled she could only see the roofs of the houses.
Our house wasn’t spared. Floodwater filled our home and reached about 2.6 meters (102.362 inches) from street level. Good thing, though, my ever vigilant mom decided to bring upstairs some of the home appliances and furniture she could carry. Every so often, too, she reminded her neighbors to do the same but some were just so complaisant. They reasoned out that “we’ve been here for 12 years and never did it occur that floodwater reaches our house.”
Sadly, that day, history changed. Our subdivision was submerged in floodwater. And its impact was so great that taught us a lesson. Perhaps, even brought a few opportunities to our family.
Manage the risk
My mother is into non-life insurance. She entered the business about 15 years or more because she believes in managing risk. Yearly, she renews our home insurance and property insurance. That means, our house and its contents are insured. Thus, despite the loss from the Ondoy episode, we were able to replace a few pieces of furniture. The money, of course, came from the property insurance claim.
One of the learnings from the Ondoy incident is the advantages of getting an insurance – whether life or non-life. It only proves that some insurance coverage is a necessity in a place where Acts of God – flood, earthquake, and typhoon – can cause one to lose his home or property. Insurance can make a big difference from restoring damaged property, replacing lost income, and even providing protection against a possible legal proceeding. In our case, we were able to claim from the property insurance. After a few months, we got a new dining table. My mom also thought of having the house repaired and repainted. Again, the money we got from the insurance helped a lot.
Change the mindset
Insurance -life or non-life – has been something individuals felt they do not need. But after the record-breaking weather phenomenon, my mom got new clients. The Ondoy episode boosted the take-up of home and property insurance policies. Likewise, it changed the mindset of a number of Filipino residential owners.
Most property owners and even businessmen realized the vulnerability of their properties and even businesses. Now, they are giving home and property insurance a chance. My mom relayed to me that time when most of his clients called her for an appointment. They would want to purchase insurance for protection.
Insure to be Sure
I asked my mom what is the best non-life insurance company in the country. She mentioned that Malayan Insurance stands at the forefront of the non-life insurance industry. The company adheres to the basic principles of good corporate governance – leadership, capability, accountability, sustainability, and integrity.
Looking at the achievements of the company and the products it offers, I may say that Malayan Insurance is proud of its accomplishment as much as it is proud of its contributions to the development of Philippine non-life insurance industry and to the progress of the Filipino nation.
Momi Berlin dares – Change Your Mindset to Manage the Risk
Momi Berlin then dares you to change that mindset. I encourage you to look into the beauty of managing risk and live worry-free. It is possible. You may start by checking what insurance companies like Malayan can and may offer.
From our Ondoy experience and from the many stories my mom narrated to me, I believe that insurance is still the best way for risk management. The loss of a property can be crippling. But insurance can really help, despite not being popular among Filipinos. Ondoy gave us the chance to look at insurance in a new view. I hope there will no longer be another Ondoy to remind us again of that view. After all, we have 100% control over our mindset more than our chances of controlling another Act of God.
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