Protecting your jewelry, whether it was bought or handed down to you, should be an important part of your personal insurance process. Most people believe that homeowners insurance policies automatically cover jewelry in the case of theft or an accident, but that isn’t necessarily true.
Ask yourself these questions to determine if your jewelry is covered – or if it is in danger of being lost forever should the unthinkable happen.
Do I have homeowners/renters insurance?
The first (and most important) step to protecting your personal property is to make sure you have homeowners or renters insurance. To receive a payout on damages and/or theft, your policy can’t have lapsed, the payments must be up to date, and all your personal information should be current. Don’t give the insurance provider any reason to reject your claims due to simple negligence.
Have I had my jewelry appraised recently?
Once you are certain you have valid coverage, you will then need to have your jewelry evaluated. If you want your insurance to pay for its replacement, you have to have prior proof of what it is worth. This is a simple task to accomplish, as every jeweler can appraise the items and issue Certificates of Authenticity. It also helps to take detailed photos of the jewelry for added security and further proof of what you own.
What is my deductible and what is the limit of my coverage?
Now that the basics are covered, you should determine if the policy you currently have is right for you and the value of your jewelry. Some policies have high deductibles. Others have maximum insurance payouts of $2,500 for all jewelry that’s damaged or stolen. Clearly, this doesn’t provide much protection for the $30,000 diamond ring sitting in your drawer that once belonged to your great-grandmother.
If your deductibles and maximum payouts are not to your liking, you may have to search for extra coverage and "schedule" your jewelry. These policies are sometimes called “floaters" or "individual articles” and they can be added to an existing policy to make sure the full value of an item is covered in the event of a claim. Keep in mind that even when you schedule an item, there are two types of coverage that should be considered: repair/replace or stated value. While the premium difference between these options may be small, the claims payout can be significantly different.
An expert advisor can help you avoid gaps or mistakes in your insurance. For decades, Schwartz Insurance Group has been helping people sort through their policies and find the best protection for their personal property. We can help you, too. Contact us any time for a free, comprehensive review.