“Oh, my” is correct. As much as we all love our jewelry, and love wearing it ALL THE TIME, we do not love insuring it. Most people groan when I mention insuring their jewelry. However, since in the past six weeks we’ve had three clients who had losses who were underinsured, I thought the topic should be addressed.
There are several things to consider. First, how do you insure jewelry? Most people reach out to their homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, or use an insurer like we have for our jewelry in the store. Most policies will have something called “unscheduled jewelry” which will stipulate a dollar amount that will be covered in the event of a total loss. This is good, although if you start to add up all your costume jewelry, sterling jewelry and better jewelry, you will be surprised how quickly the total climbs. To get an idea of how much you may have, put a “pretend” value on each piece. It’s easier to do for your costume and sterling jewelry. What would something similar cost in the typical place you would buy it (like costume jewelry in a department store)? $15? $25? $75? If you know how much it cost, all the better. Add those first. I bet you have more there than you thought.
So now you know approximately how much you have in smaller value pieces. How does that compare to the amount stipulated on your policy? If that amount is already over your limit, check with your agent or insurance carrier. Maybe you can raise the limit. There is a cost to that, but it may be worth it to you. Or maybe you will decide to self insure, meaning you won’t get enough money to replace all those pieces, because you don’t want to replace them anyway. You could set aside part of the premium difference in case you have a total loss, so you have a stash to draw from over and above what the insurance company might pay. Take some pictures of your costume and sterling jewelry so you can substantiate what you have. Insurance companies like that.
Jewelry, Insurance and Appraisals, Oh My! Part 2
Please note: We are not insurance agents nor do we profess to understand all the policy choices available. The info is based on our experience. Check with your insurance agent to get the specifics on your policy. And if you would like help sorting, give us a call. We’d be happy to sort through your jewelry and give you some direction (there’s no cost for this service).