Most of us spend countless hours looking for those special pieces for our collections. However we tend to forget one of the most important parts of a collection. That is insuring our collections and choosing coverage that fits our needs.
There are many options out there for insuring your antiques and collectibles. However getting the right amount of coverage or knowing where to start can be a very confusing and frustrating task.
In this article I have answered some of the common questions I am asked about insurance and coverage.
Lets start by first covering the most common insurance policy options.
Antique and Collectible Insurance Policy Options and Coverage
Types of Insurance Options for Antiques and Collectibles
- Homeowners insurance with adjusted antique and collectable coverage
- Homeowners insurance with antique and collectible rider
- Separate policy with your homeowner’s insurance company
- Separate policy with a specialty insurance company
Policy Explanation and Types of Collections They Should be Used for
1. Homeowners insurance with adjusted antique and collectible coverage. – With most homeowners insurance you can increase the amount of coverage for specific types of items.
This type of policy is good if you have a very small collection. This is the way to go if you are just starting your collection.
2. Homeowners insurance with antique and collectible rider. An insurance rider is a lot like a supplement to your insurance policy. These are special conditions added to your policy to cover items outside of the standard policy coverage.
This type of policy is good if you have a small to medium size collection.
3. Separate policy with your homeowner’s insurance company. You can usually carry more than one policy with your insurance company. One to cover your standard household items and one specifically for your antiques and collectibles.
This type of policy is good if you have a large or rare/unique collection.
4. Separate policy with a specialty insurance company. There are a few insurance companies that specialize in antique and collectible insurance. These companies will write polices based on your collection and coverage need. These companies tend to be much more flexible with their policies than the standard insurance company.
This type of policy is good if you have a large, very large, rare/unique or specialized collection. However they will usually cover any size collection and are worth checking out to see what they can do for you.
Now that we have covered some of the policy types, lets talk about item types and if they are covered.
Types of Items that are Generally Covered By a Standard Homeowners Policy
With most homeowners policies there is a personal property coverage section. Personal property is considered to be the contents of your house.
However there are usually limited coverage for many types of items. Here is a brief list of items that usually have limited coverage.
Limited Coverage Items
- Artwork and Paintings
- Business Property
- Collector Items
- Limited Editions
- Sports Collectibles
- Collectibles (example: Hummels)
- Sporting Equipment
Some items are excluded as personal property. These items are usually motorized vehicles.
You would need to check with your insurance provider to see what is covered and what coverage limitations your policy has. Note that each insurance company, country and government have different regulations and rules.
When choosing your insurance and coverage, it is best to talk to your insurance company. They will be able to explain what is included in your policy and what modification you can make to your coverage.
Also make sure you check with different companies as each one has different policies, coverage and rates. Do not be afraid to check with a specialty insurer no matter what the size of your collection is.
Specialty insurers can be much more flexible and create a policy to fit your collection needs and may even be able to give you a better rate than your current insurer.
Here are 2 antique and collectible insurers in the U.S. Please note I have not personally used these companies and I was not paid to recommend them.
Documenting your Antiques and Collectibles
All insurance companies require you to prove your ownership of items when you are making a claim.
It is very important to document all your items (including your common household items) properly. This will make your life much easier if you ever have to make a claim. The following article will explain how to properly document your items for your insurance company.
Remember knowledge is the only way to protect yourself when it comes to antiques and collectible. Having knowledge of your items and how much they are worth is not the only thing you need to know. You need to also know how to protect those items from events out of your control.
If you have any questions about insuring your items please feel free to leave them in the comments below.