Most insurers set a limit on how much they will pay out on a single item and sometimes, this limit can be as low as £1,000. So if you have high-value items in your home, you should take steps to make sure they are properly protected should disaster strike.
This quick guide explains how to protect your precious stuff – at the right price.
What are high-value contents?
High-value home contents are any items that would cost more than, say, £1,000 or £2,000 to replace. In most homes, they fall into two categories: technology and valuables.
Valuables can include jewellery, items made of gold, silver or precious metals, paintings, and antiques. Hi-tech items likely to be high value include computers, televisions and state-of-the-art cameras.
Where can I find contents insurance for high-value items?
Home insurance policies will usually include cover for valuable items such as jewellery, as long as the items are named on the policy. As explained above, however, they will often only pay out up to a certain amount per item.
Some may also ask you to pay a high excess on any claims for high-value items – which can cut your premium, but means that you have to pay a large amount towards any claim.
If you have a lot of expensive equipment or valuables in your home, you may therefore want to take out specialist cover to avoid losing out should disaster strike.
Available from a wide range of insurers including Barclays and Aon, some policies of this kind offer unlimited cover for single items. Others will allow you to claim for up to say £5,000 per item.
You will have to shop around to find the best combination of protection and price for your needs.
Just remember to check that the total amount you can claim is also sufficient to cover everything else – including furniture and fittings that could be damaged in a fire or flood.
The best way to do this is to go from room to room listing your belongings before calculating how much it would cost to replace them all.
Is there anything else I should know?
High-value items are often the first things taken if your home is burgled. So ensure your fine art, antiques, and jewellery are insured for the full replacement cost.
And if you buy or are given any expensive items such as a new computer or a Rolex watch, contact your insurer to add it to your policy.
Remember too that the value of assets such as artwork can fluctuate depending on market conditions. If, for example, an artist whose work you have dies, the value of the piece could increase sharply.
Conducting regular valuations is a good way to ensure you are not left unprotected.
Doing this – and keeping photographic evidence of your belongings – will also help the police to trace them if they are lost or stolen.