Understand the steps to insuring antiques and collectibles
Whether you collect one-of-a-kind works of art, sports memorabilia, or antiques, if you not only cherish these unique and valuable items chances are they are also quite valuable. You’ve invested a substantial amount of time, money, and effort into curating your collection so there’s no doubt it’s worth protecting.
A standard homeowners’ policy may only provide a total of approximately $2,500 in coverage or $1,000 per item for a loss.
Many people fail to properly insure their valuable pieces and end up paying for them in the long run. Don’t make this mistake.
If you’re a collector, have valuable antiques, or artwork don’t leave this gap in your coverage. Adding protection for your valuables gives you added peace of mind for the items you treasure most. Here’s an overview of what you need to know.
Coverage from your current homeowners’ policy
Most people buy a homeowner’s insurance policy and assume the coverage will cover all of their belongings without exception. But, it’s important to know that there are limitations to basic homeowner’s coverage. This is especially important if you have a large number of antiques and collectibles. Insurance companies group artwork, collectibles, and antiques together into one category and will typically only provide approximately $2,500 in coverage or $1,000 per loss.
Furthermore, basic coverage only applies to certain loss scenarios resulting in claims coverage for some instances and not others. For example, if you lost a part of your collection or if it was damaged during transportation to a new location, it is likely this gap in coverage would not cover the damage or loss. The good news is, there are specialized policy add-ons or endorsements that will give you added protection! Let’s take a closer look at what’s involved with getting the coverage you and your cherished, high-value possessions deserve.
In order for policy enhancements to cover your collectibles, antiques, or artwork the first step you will need to take is to get an appraisal. Before you do this, talk with your insurance agent about the type of appraisal that your insurance company requires.
You’ll likely need to work with a qualified appraiser who can authenticate or certify your items. Don’t waste time and money moving forward with this step unless you’ve cleared your appraiser with your insurance agent. Many people make the mistake of hiring an appraiser who offers a lower rate, only to find out they are not accepted by their insurance agency once the process has already been completed.
Document Your Collection
Now that your appraisals are complete, you’ll want to document and organize all of the key information about each item in your collection. With proper documentation, you will be more likely to have a successful claims resolution if you suffer a loss. Collect photos, appraisal information, receipts if you have them, and record the date of purchase. Keep all of this information in a secure location and keep multiple copies so, in the event of a fire, flood, or break-in, the documentation is preserved. This process is called scheduling your valuables and it is required to obtain additional insurance for antiques and other types of collectibles. There are many helpful apps that can assist with this process.
How Does Collectibles Insurance Work?
Once you’ve appraised and documented your collection, you’re ready to move forward with securing the right policy enhancements. Your agent will walk you through your options and find the plan that best suits your individual needs. There is no one-size-fits-all policy because everyone’s situation is unique. A knowledgeable agent will help you find the right coverage for you and will take time to ensure that you have a thorough understanding of the coverage and limitations.
High-value items and collectibles are special and require special consideration so you can have that added peace of mind. So, if you’ve been putting off properly insuring your valuable collectibles and antiques, it’s time to talk with your agent to get the process started. Contact us at Colby Insurance Group today. We are ready to help!
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Content Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. Insurance needs and coverages vary, therefore the terms of your policy will be specific to your situation. We recommend that you discuss your insurance needs with a licensed agent for details on pricing, coverages, and exclusions.