Why You May Need Valuable Items Insurance

January 21, 2015

For possessions that are more valuable, it is important to obtain valuable items coverage. Items such as original art, expensive jewelry and collectors' items are some examples of what this coverage is useful for. Homeowners' policies place limits on the amount of money provided for personal items, but this supplemental form of insurance goes beyond that to cover specific valuables. If they are stolen, destroyed in a fire or lost to a natural disaster, the policy will cover them.

When To Buy A Policy
Coverage for personal possessions is very broad with a typical home insurance policy. Appliances, furniture and clothing are the items most commonly covered. Furs, firearms, jewelry and other valuables are also covered, but coverage for these special items is very limited. Certain things may not be covered. For example, a rare diamond that falls out of an expensive setting may not be covered, but it would be covered if it were named in a supplemental policy. A person whose expensive computer equipment is destroyed during a flood may not receive compensation under a normal home insurance policy, but the equipment would be covered if it were part of a valuable items policy. For those who have an extensive amount of valuable items, there is additional coverage offered beyond the supplemental valuable items policy. There is a total dollar limit for all valuables combined, and there is a dollar limit per valuable as well. Nearly any valuable item qualifies, but it is best to discuss any concerns about specific items with an agent.

More Comprehensive Coverage
In addition to providing a higher dollar limit for insuring valuable items, this special type of policy has a broader range of covered perils. Coverage may also span worldwide in some instances. For some items, mysterious disappearance may even be covered. Extremely delicate items may be covered if they are accidentally broken. For breakages, there are usually deductibles that apply. However, there are no deductibles for most types of losses.

Listing Items
The first step in obtaining this type of coverage is to contact an agent. The agent will ask for a specific list of items to include. A list of smaller items that would not typically be named but still receive coverage will be included. A thorough description and appraised value for each item will be needed. Photographs of items are not required, but they are helpful to take and keep in a safe location. This will make it easier to identify and remember them if the need arises to file a claim in the future.

New Property
When new and valuable items are acquired, be sure to update the policy. Purchase additional coverage if necessary. The same applies if valuables are sold or given away as gifts. Be sure to let an agent know immediately to change the policy's details. In most cases, a person only has between 30 days and 90 days to update a policy with newly-acquired items. The time limit depends on the classification of the item or items. If items are stolen, lost or broken before the time limit of notification, they are usually covered. There are exceptions, so talk to an agent if there are any doubts.

Loss settlements are handled differently, and the amount received depends on the type of item and its specified amount. In some cases, items will be replaced for their cash value. In other instances, items may be settled upon for the amount it would cost to replace them at the time of loss.


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