Are Your Jewelry and Other High Value Items Covered on Your Homeowners Policy?

Did you receive some really nice stuff for Christmas?  Do you plan on getting a gorgeous piece of Jewelry for Valentine’s Day?  Do you know if these items are covered on homeowners or renters policy?  Many people are under the misconception that these items are covered when they actually may be underinsured or completely uninsured.

In fact, almost all homeowners policies contain wording that specifically reduce limits on target items and other items of higher value.  Don’t be a victim of underinsurance!

How do you insure jewelry and other valuables?  By adding a personal article floater (PAF) to your insurance policy.

How to buy a personal article floater

Follow these steps to make sure you’re buying the proper policy for insuring your jewelry and other valuables:

  1. List your valuables. If you have a collection of valuable items you would like to insure, provide a list of these items to your insurance agent. The list should include a description of each item and their appraised or purchased value. An appraisal is typically acceptable if it was done within the past 3 to 5 years. (But be sure to keep your appraisals updated if you’re considering switching policies.)
  2. Check your policy provisions for newly acquired property. What happens if you buy a new piece of artwork or jewelry after the policy is in place? Make sure you understand what you have to do to get it covered under your policy.
  3. Is there a deductible? Ask your agent if the personal articles floater has a deductible and if you can adjust the size of the deductible to minimize the premium cost.
  4. Keep photos or video of your valuable items in addition to appraisals and proof of purchase. You’ll need these in case you file a claim, so be sure you keep them in a safe deposit box or scan them and keep several electronic copies in different locations.
  5. Consider installing an alarm system in your home. Increased home security should translate into a discount on the premium.
  6. Can you store your jewelry and other valuables off-site? If the items can be placed in a bank safety deposit box, this will also qualify for a significant savings on the policy premium.

Remember, not everything you own needs to be under a personal article floater policy.  Just the really good stuff.

Carrie Van Beurden

carrievb@vanbeurden.com