After thanking a special someone this holiday season for that extra special gift, contact your insurer! While a homeowners policy does typically provide coverage for jewelry, this coverage has its limitations. Why? Because jewelry is high-valued, is easily lost or damaged, and is vulnerable to theft (as well as fraud). If you only own just a few hundred dollars in jewlery, perhaps the limited coverage provided by a basic policy is just enough. However, if you own high values of jewelry, you should consider buying special insurance coverage. There are a few options available for you, such as buying additional insurance that is attached to your homeowners or renter’s policy or purchasing a separate jewelry policy.
Before choosing the type of coverage, ask your agent specific questions such as: Does the coverage allow for jewelry values that increase over time? Does it cover mysterious disappearances and other causes of loss, or just fire and theft? Discussing the coverage is important because it helps you understand the steps you must take to make sure that you keep the maximum coverage and whether the coverage you receive is worth the additional price.
Documenting The Jewelry’s Value
On a store receipt or certificate, the value of a recently purchased jewelry item is usually presented. However, as time goes on, the insured value must be reevaluated, perhaps through a competent appraiser. Receiving an appraisal is the safest way to assure that your property is properly protected. There are several professional jewelry and appraisal associations out there that can give you information on appraisers and appraising methods. Since you will have to pay a fee for an appraisal service, it is important that all of your expectations are being met.
Handle Your Jewelry With Care
Once you’re certain about the value of your jewelry and its insurance coverage, you need to take precautions in properly handling your jewelry, especially if you own a significant amount of expensive jewelry. After all, who wants to actually file a claim?
- Get new appraisals every two or three years, sending a copy to your insurer
- Keep original receipts and all appraisals
- Take photos of your jewelry from several angles; again, share copies with your agent or insurance company
- Consider a quality in-home security system, including a hidden safe
- Take care on where and when your jewelry is worn to try to avoid becoming a theft target
- Consider storing jewelry that is rarely worn in a bank or saving institution’s vault. (Note that such special storage often qualifies for an insurance premium discount)
Remember: Your first step is to talk to an insurance professional since he or she shares your concern that you have the protection you need at the price you can afford!
If you have any questions about your existing policy, are inquiring information about a possible future policy or need further information, please call us at (631) 738-7300 or get a quick quote at www.vrpinsurance.com
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