Do you own a dazzling diamond ring heirloom passed down through generations? A priceless antique painting that adds a touch of old-world charm to your great room? Or perhaps a rare first-edition comic book or prized baseball card that fuels your inner child?
If you possess items of significant value, then valuable articles insurance might be the missing piece in your security puzzle. Especially since many people may be shocked to learn that their standard homeowner’s or renter’s insurance only covers a portion of the cost to replace stolen, lost, or damaged valuables.
“While typical homeowner’s policies are designed to protect your home and what’s inside, there is usually limited coverage for valuable possessions — such as jewelry, fine art, wine and spirits, antiques, and collectibles — that may get lost, stolen, or damaged,” explains Chubb which says that a valuable articles policy, “provides insurance for your collections, so you can feel confident that your special possessions are protected.”
Why You Might Need Valuable Articles Insurance
Valuable Articles Insurance, sometimes referred to as valuable items insurance or scheduled personal property coverage, is a tailored form of insurance designed to protect items of significant value that may surpass the limits of a standard homeowners or renters policy.
Reasons you might need this specialized insurance include:
- Enhanced Coverage: Standard homeowners insurance typically has low coverage limits for valuables, leaving you exposed to significant financial losses if something happens. Valuable articles insurance provides customized coverage tailored to the specific value and type of your items.
- Peace of Mind: Knowing your precious possessions are protected can bring invaluable peace of mind. Whether it's a sudden storm causing damage or a burglary attempt, valuable articles insurance ensures you can focus on recovery, not financial worries.
- Specialized Protection: Certain valuables, like antique jewelry or artwork, require specialized coverage and handling. Valuable articles insurance providers understand these unique needs and offer tailored policies and services for optimal protection.
Put another way, Chubb says you can protect your valuables so that they will “last a lifetime and beyond” so that “their stories continue for generations to come.”
Items Typically Covered by Valuable Articles Insurance
Valuable articles insurance policies – which differ by each insurance provider so work with your insurance agent for coverage that fits your individual needs -- may cover expensive or personal belongings like:
- Coin collection
- Expensive electronics
- Family heirlooms
- Fine art
- Fine furniture
- Luxury items
- Medical devices
- Musical instruments
- Rare collectibles
- Rugs and tapestries
- Silver and goldware
- Sports equipment
- Sports memorabilia
- Stamp collections
- Unique and one-of-a-kind personal effects
- Wine and Spirits collections
5 Tips When Considering Valuable Articles Coverage
For those undecided if valuable articles coverage is right for their situation, the folks at Travelers offer the following five tips:
- Understand Your Insurance Policy: Start by reading your standard property insurance policy and understanding the limits of coverage for certain valuable items that are stolen or damaged. If you have items excluded from your coverage or if you possess items that are of significantly more value than what your policy limits state, then you may need valuable articles coverage.
- Make Sure Your Valuables are Appraised: By appraising your valuable items, you will gain a clear understanding of how much it would take to replace them and then determine if your current policy meets your coverage needs. For some items, a reappraisal periodically will be needed as the value of some collectibles fluctuates.
- Create a Home Inventory: It’s a good idea to create a home inventory no matter the number of valuable items you possess. By creating a home inventory, you can gain a complete picture of all your valuable possessions and your need for additional coverage. Make sure to check your entire home including the garage, basement, and attic.
- Monitor Your Neighborhood Crime Rate: Understanding the odds of your home being the target of a burglary may help you decide on the need for valuable articles insurance. Many local police departments share crime statistics with citizens or publish them in local media. Note: it’s also a good idea to install a security alarm system if you have valuables to protect. This will not only give you peace of mind but usually qualifies you for a discount on your homeowners' policy.
- Don’t Forget the Tech: When you think of thieves targeting home valuables you might consider cash, jewelry, artwork, and other luxury items but a recent trend is towards the theft of electronic items which can easily be resold. If you have expensive laptops, desktops, printers, gaming consoles, televisions, and other high-end electronics, you might consider them for additional coverage in the event of a break-in.
Standard Options for Valuable Articles Insurance
There are several options for valuable articles insurance including:
- Stand-Alone Policy: This is a separate policy dedicated solely to your valuables. It offers flexibility and customization for your specific needs.
- Rider to Existing Policy: You can add a rider to your existing homeowner's insurance policy to extend coverage to your valuables. This can be a cost-effective option but may have limitations on coverage and customization.
“Some homeowners insurance companies offer a package with increased blanket coverage that does not require an appraisal. If the basic policy includes coverage up to $1,000 for jewelry, for example, you may have the option to increase the coverage to $5,000 or more to cover all jewelry items,” explains Bankrate. “In contrast, a scheduled personal property endorsement allows you to list your specific high-value property with a specific cost associated with each piece.”
Bankrate says you can expect a typically scheduled personal property policy to include:
- Accidental loss coverage, also called mysterious disappearance.
- Accidental physical damage coverage.
- $0 deductible for scheduled personal property claim (unless the policyholder chooses a higher deductible).
Bankrate says: “Had you just lost or misplaced your engagement ring, you would not have had coverage under a homeowners policy. But if it was scheduled, you may be able to recoup the cost without paying a deductible. Scheduled personal property is also generally covered under an open perils basis, which means all loss types are covered unless they are specifically excluded in the policy documents.”
Contact Dean & Draper today to make sure that your insurance coverage protects all your valuables.
The recommendation(s), advice, and contents of this material are provided for informational purposes only and do not purport to address every possible legal obligation, hazard, code violation, loss potential, or exception to good practice. Dean & Draper Insurance Agency specifically disclaims any warranty or representation that acceptance of any recommendations or advice contained herein will make any premises, property, or operation safe or in compliance with any law or regulation. Under no circumstances should this material or your acceptance of any recommendations or advice contained herein be construed as establishing the existence or availability of any insurance coverage with Dean & Draper Insurance Agency. By providing this information to you, Dean & Draper Insurance Agency does not assume (and specifically disclaims) any duty, undertaking, or responsibility to you. The decision to accept or implement any recommendation(s) or advice contained in this material must be made by you.
The recommendation(s), advice and contents of this material are provided for informational purposes only and do not purport to address every possible legal obligation, hazard, code violation, loss potential or exception to good practice. Dean & Draper Insurance Agency specifically disclaims any warranty or representation that acceptance of any recommendations or advice contained herein will make any premises, property or operation safe or in compliance with any law or regulation. Under no circumstances should this material or your acceptance of any recommendations or advice contained herein be construed as establishing the existence or availability of any insurance coverage with Dean & Draper Insurance Agency. By providing this information to you, Dean & Draper Insurance Agency does not assume (and specifically disclaims) any duty, undertaking or responsibility to you. The decision to accept or implement any recommendation(s) or advice contained in this material must be made by you.