Like everything in life, there is a right way and a wrong way to insure your jewelry. Let’s take a look at some of the mistakes people make when insuring jewelry and how to insure jewelry the right way.
The Wrong Way: Not Insuring Jewelry At All
The Right Way: Insure All Jewelry of Monetary or Sentimental Value
Jewelry should be insured from the moment of purchase, or as soon as possible afterward. Ask yourself if you could replace or repair your jewelry without insurance to help cover the cost. If the answer is no, then you need jewelry insurance. Protecting your jewelry with insurance will make replacing it or repairing it an easy process.
The Wrong Way: Thinking a Jewelry Warranty Is the Same as Jewelry Insurance
The Right Way: Get Specialized Jewelry Insurance
A jewelry warranty is not jewelry insurance because it does not provide full coverage for jewelry loss, theft, or damage. The warranty states specific types of loss or damage that are covered and anything that does not fall within the realm of the warranty will not be covered. Most importantly, jewelry warranties don’t cover mysterious disappearance, which is when you’re not exactly sure how your jewelry went missing. A jewelry insurance policy covers mysterious disappearance and any other loss or theft of jewelry. Jewelry insurance is a specific field of the insurance world. Not every insurance company knows enough about insuring jewelry to do the job properly. If you want to be able to fully replace your jewelry, get specialized jewelry insurance.
The Wrong Way: Relying on Homeowners Insurance
The Right Way: Get Stand-Alone Jewelry Insurance
Homeowners’ or renters’ insurance covers the loss of items that are specifically listed in the policy. And even when jewelry is listed in the policy, the amount of coverage is usually much less than the value of the jewelry. When you make a claim for lost jewelry on your homeowner’s insurance, it can affect your entire policy and make future premium rates higher. A claim on your homeowner’s insurance can even affect your eligibility to renew homeowners insurance.
The Wrong Way: Guessing the Value of Your Jewelry
The Right Way: Get an Official Appraisal
When getting your jewelry insured make sure you get an official appraisal of the jewelry’s value. Use only a professional, approved appraiser. A jewelry appraisal will put the value of your jewelry in writing and it will be used to set the coverage of your policy. If you’ve had an appraisal that has underestimated the value of your jewelry, a claim might not give you the amount needed to replace your loss. With an appraisal, you can accurately get your jewelry insured for its current retail and replacement value. Some insurance companies may accept a detailed purchase receipt instead of an appraisal.
The Wrong Way: Never Updating Your Jewelry Insurance Policy
The Right Way: Get Your Appraisal Updated
It is recommended that you get your insured jewelry reappraised every 2-5 years. The value of precious gems and precious metals fluctuates. Your unique jewelry might be more valuable now than it was at the time you took out the jewelry policy. If you have not had your jewelry reappraised, and the value has gone up, then the insurance payout may not cover the replacement of the jewelry. And if your jewelry is worth less than it was originally insured for, you might be paying more than you need for your jewelry insurance.
The Wrong Way: Assuming You Understand the Policy
The Right Way: Read the Small Print And Ask Questions
Some jewelry insurance policies require that you pay a portion of the cost to replace or repair jewelry in the event of loss, theft, or damage. This is called a deductible – an amount that you pay out-of-pocket when you file a claim for jewelry loss, theft, or damage. If possible, opt for a policy with no deductible. Ask your insurance company for details about your policy. For example, in the event of damaged jewelry, who chooses the jeweler? Does the insurance cover loss, or theft that happens abroad? Does it cover mysterious disappearance when you don’t know if the jewelry was lost or stolen?