What is your most prized possession? Maybe it’s that stunning engagement ring on your finger, or perhaps your late aunt left you a collection of original art pieces. No matter what kind of vintage or sentimental items bring you joy, it’s important to protect them from theft, material damage and other unforeseeable issues.  

We’d all like to think we are immune to misfortunes like robbery, but it can truly happen to anyone. Breaking and entering happens more frequently as the job market cools, which means we may be in for a surge of thefts. 

If you think you’re safe because you live in a quiet rural area, a few stats could prove otherwise. Although new provincial programs are helping reduce rural theft and crime rates in Alberta, they’re still higher than in urban areas. 

Other risks to your valuables could include damages, loss due to misplacing items or incidents like house fires. Your insurance broker is often the person who thinks about concerns like these at renewal time, but it’s always best to get insurance as soon as you add something of value. 

As soon as you bring home that ring, fur coat collection, abstract art piece, or collector’s bottle, get in touch with an Edmonton insurance broker to find out how to protect it. 

VALUABLE ITEMS ARE NOT TYPICALLY INCLUDED IN YOUR HOME INSURANCE

Most people assume that if they were robbed, their home or condo insurance would step in to cover any losses. Unfortunately, that’s not typically the case.

Sometimes there are limits to your home coverage that you may not know about. While standard homeowners insurance or tenant/renters insurance is quite broad, coverage for valuable items is limited through these policies.

It’s important to check how much coverage you currently have through your insurance. For example, your jewelry might only be covered for up to a couple of thousand dollars, even though you have $10,000 of jewelry in your home. If that’s the case, you’ll need to purchase a separate valuable items policy to cover those pieces.

WHAT NEEDS TO BE COVERED?

Some items of personal property that may fall outside your home insurance coverage include: 

  • Jewelry, including engagement rings
  • Furs
  • Fine art collections
  • Wine collections
  • Bicycles
  • Silverware
  • Firearms
  • Computer equipment
  • Coin, stamp, or baseball card collections
  • Musical instruments
  • High-value furniture

It’s a good idea to list out all of the high-value items in your home before you buy or renew your home insurance. Your broker can help you determine what will and won’t be covered and which items should have additional coverage.

WHAT’S THE PROCESS FOR GETTING VALUABLE ITEMS INSURANCE?

A qualified insurance broker will be able to guide you through the process, but in general, you can expect that:

  1. Your current coverage under existing policies will be assessed
  2. You’ll be required to complete a schedule (or list) of items in your house. This itemized list will help ensure you are covered for each individual valuable item in your home.
  3. In most cases, you’ll need to have items professionally appraised to determine the replacement or cash value.

You might want to keep up with appraisals every few years, especially for items like jewelry, which tend to increase in value.

HOW TO SAFEGUARD YOUR HOME FROM WOULD-BE THIEVES

Jewelry insurance and high-value item insurance are great to have in case something happens, but it’s always better to avoid instances like thefts in the first place. Here are a few ways you can help secure your home:

  • Lock all your windows and doors before leaving your home. You might not pay attention to that basement window you left open to let the breeze in, but a robber will!
  • Consider installing a security system in your home.
  • Put up a “beware of dog” sign on your fence or gate (even if you don’t have a dog).
  • Have someone visit your home to check on it while you’re away. Even a little bit of activity at your home helps keep opportunistic robbers away.
  • Put motion-sensor lights up around your garage and the outside of your home. 
  • Keep curtains closed and valuables tucked out of sight as often as possible.

GET A FREE INSURANCE AUDIT TO SEE IF YOU NEED ADDITIONAL PROTECTION

Paying more for your insurance is annoying, but your most loved and valuable possessions are priceless. Our insurance brokers would love to take a look at your policy and let you know which gaps need to be filled to protect your assets fully.

Call us for a no-obligation audit of your existing insurance policies and feel better knowing everything in your home is covered.

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