Valuable Article Insurance & Valentine’s Greetings
February 11, 2021
With gift-giving in the air, we’re here to remind you to take the necessary steps to make sure your valuable items are properly covered. We know, it’s not the most romantic next step, but, you’ll thank yourself down the road when a diamond falls out of the setting, you’ve misplaced your most expensive watch or your home is burglarized.
At Robertson Ryan we understand how easy it is to be busy with life and forget that another important part of owning valuable items is having them insured properly. With February’s popular Valentine’s Day gift giving tradition, it is the ideal time to review your insurance program.
Did you know? Despite the pandemic, retail spending will soar once again, according to the 2021 National Retail Federation (NRF) annual survey. Spending for Valentine’s Day is expected to reach $21.8B on gifts for partners, friends, pets and more. Source: NRF’s 2021 Valentine’s Day Spending Survey
Coverage Under Your Homeowners?
The standard homeowners/condo/renters policies do provide some coverage for valuables; however, the limits are generally low and the coverage can be limited. Whether it is jewelry, fine art, antiques or collectables, contacting your Robertson Ryan agent to discuss coverages and the best way to insure these items is essential.
Below is a list of potential items that may need additional coverage:
|Silverware||Antiques (china, crystal, decorative items)|
|Heirlooms (furniture, paintings, etc.)||Designer Appliances|
|Collectibles (stamps, coins, glassware, etc.)||Firearms|
Creating a Home Inventory
Keeping a home inventory to document your valuables can be a simple home inventory checklist or a more comprehensive digital inventory list including photographs and videos of every room in your house and specifically your valuables. When itemizing your possessions, be sure to include descriptions, signatures and serial numbers, date purchased, quantity, current value and/or purchase price and the retailer’s location. Keep a copy of this inventory in a safety deposit box, a safe at home, saved digitally in the cloud or securely at your office or offsite. Home Inventory Checklist
Replacement Cost vs. Actual Cash Value
There are two main valuation methods when it comes to property and valuables, replacement cost and actual cash value.
Replacement Cost is simply the cost to repurchase the item (following a loss) with the same exact item or similar item made of comparable materials and used for similar purposes. Simply put, it allows you to replace an item you purchased yesterday at today’s prices (less than any deductible that may apply).
Actual Cash Value allows the repurchase/replacement of an item but takes into consideration the age and depreciated value of the item being replaced. Therefore, it is not a full replacement coverage and gives you the current market value based on the condition and age at the time of the loss. As this is also a lesser value, it is also usually less expensive to insure using the ACV method.
Most home policies use replacement cost valuation, however, you should check your policy or contact your Robertson Ryan agent to confirm your coverage and discuss valuation. Determining the right value means holding onto receipts, appraisals and updating appraisals when necessary. Either way keeping a home inventory or proof of your belongings using the documentation described earlier, is essential.
Other Important Considerations
- Breakable items such as china and art should also have breakage coverage added
- Make sure theft, or mysterious disappearance coverage (covers losses when the cause is unknown), is included on your policy
- Specialty appraisers for high-ticket items or rare memorabilia can be a good idea
- Have your artwork, family heirlooms and precious valuables reappraised periodically and adjust your coverage and home inventory lists, as necessary
- When traveling your valuables make sure you’ve added “movable” coverage, worldwide if necessary
- Knowing how your insurance for special valuables responds to a loss is important when considering how you use, display and store those items in your home or other secure locations
- Many insurance policies provide some automatic coverage for newly acquired property, but best to avoid delay, as the time period is limited and the coverage may not reflect the full value
There are a lot of variables in play and each homeowners’ insurance policy is as unique as your individual needs. As your Trusted Advisors that is where our experience comes in. Should you have any questions on your personal insurance program please contact your Agent or Service Team. They are happy to talk about your current policy or answer any questions you may have. Contact Us