A standard homeowners insurance policy comes with personal property coverage to pay for your belongings if they’re stolen, damaged, or destroyed. But your personal property insurance offers limited coverage for more expensive items, which means if you need to insure things like jewelry or fine art, you’ll need additional coverage to protect your valuable items.
Homeowners who need higher levels of coverage for their valuables should purchase a scheduled personal property coverage endorsement.
What insurance protects the value of your belongings?
The best way to make sure your valuables are properly insured is to purchase scheduled personal property coverage. Scheduled personal property coverage is an endorsement that can be added to your homeowners insurance policy to increase your coverage limits so your high-value items are properly insured.
While a standard homeowners insurance policy does provide personal property protection, it limits coverage for expensive items like jewelry, antiques, electronics, and other valuable items.
What is considered a valuable item?
From an insurance perspective, a valuable item is something that is some combination of expensive, collectible, and rare. An expensive wedding ring, a vintage comic book collection, or a first edition Charles Dickens novel are all examples of a valuable item.
Insurance companies cover a wide variety of valuable items, including:
Collectibles (like books, coins, and stamps)
Fine china and silverware
4 steps to take to insure your valuables
When it comes to insurance coverage, some items are more valuable than others. For example, the clothes in your hamper may not need special insurance, but an expensive piano or the fur coat hanging in your closet probably do. Wedding rings, expensive art, antique silverware, musical instruments, and expensive electronics are just a few of the items that may need additional insurance coverage.
There are several steps you should take to make sure your valuables are properly insured:
1. Check what your insurance covers
Your homeowners insurance policy should specify coverage limits for personal property, including individual limits for valuable items. It should also tell you whether your property is covered on an all-perils basis or a named-perils basis, letting you know exactly what losses are covered under your policy.
If you’re not sure what your coverage limits are and you’re having difficulty understanding the policy information included on the declaration page of your home insurance policy, reach out to an insurance expert at Policygenius. We can help you verify exactly what’s covered by your homeowners insurance and offer advice for additional coverage you might need.
2. Get an appraisal
The best way to know whether or not your valuable items need scheduled personal property coverage is to get an appraisal. You should get an appraisal every few years to make sure your items are all appropriately insured, especially for one-of-a-kind items or other valuables that increase in value over time.
Additionally, an appraisal is necessary if you have an antique or heirloom item that can’t really be compared to other items on the market.
3. Create an inventory
To make sure you know how much insurance coverage you need, it’s a good idea to put together a list of everything in your home, including pictures and descriptions of items of value.
You’ll also want to include the original purchase price, date of purchase, where you bought it, and, if you have it, a copy of the receipt. This list is important if you ever have to file a personal property claim.
You’ll need to have a category for expensive or valuable items as part of your home inventory. For example, if you own several pieces of costume jewelry, you may not have enough invested in the collection to warrant individual coverage for those pieces. But you’ll want a separate line item (and additional coverage) for your diamond engagement ring.
4. Purchase scheduled personal property coverage
The best way to insure valuable items is to purchase scheduled personal property coverage. This is supplemental protection that can be added to your home insurance policy that increases coverage limits for specified items.
Typically, a home insurance policy has coverage limits for items like jewelry, collectibles, and fine art. If you have valuable items that go beyond the basic coverage limits, you’ll need to purchase scheduled personal property coverage for those valuables to ensure they're fully protected.