What is jewellery insurance?
Jewellery insurance is designed to cover the value of your jewellery in case it gets stolen or damaged. Jewellery insurance can help to protect items of value you’ve inherited, such as family heirlooms, and also single high-value items such as engagement rings.
You can do this by either adding your valuable possessions to your existing contents or home insurance policy or by buying specific jewellery cover.
Why do you need jewellery cover?
If you have a relatively modest amount of jewellery - say it’s worth less than £1,000-£1,500 - then it should be covered as standard by your contents insurance policy.
Most standard contents insurance will cover your belongings up to a specified limit selected by you, for example £40,000. In this case, you could claim a maximum of £40,000 if your belongings were destroyed in a fire or stolen - but this would cover all your home contents, including your jewellery.
Most contents policies will limit the amount you can claim for any one single item, such as a ring or a watch.
So if your home insurance policy has what’s called a single item limit of £1,500, you could still make a claim of up to £40,000 - but the most you could claim for any one item would be £1,500.
If you have items worth more than the single item limit, you will need to list them separately when you run a quotation. The insurer will then set your premium accordingly. There will be an upper limit on the value of items they are willing to insure - this could be £10,000 or higher.
If you have particularly expensive items, you may find that you need to add specialist jewellery or valuables insurance on top of your contents cover.
The average value of jewellery cover consumers are looking to take out to protect their jewellery collection is £2,750, according to MoneySuperMarket data January – June 2018.
Adding a ring to your home insurance
Precious items like engagement rings or wedding rings are often among the most valuable pieces of jewellery in a collection, which is why it pays to be aware of the single item limit.
If your engagement ring or wedding ring is worth more than the single item limit - which is usually around £1,000-£1,500 - it will need to be added separately to the policy.
You can do this by mentioning it separately when you get a home insurance quote on our site, or by asking your insurer about it over the phone. Alternatively, you could purchase specific engagement ring insurance or diamond ring insurance.
Getting a specific item insured in this way gives you total peace of mind, and will give you more confidence to wear and enjoy your items of value.
Insuring an expensive watch
If you have an expensive watch such as a Cartier, Rolex or Omega, it’s worth getting it insured so you’re not left out of pocket if it gets stolen, lost or needs repairs.
You might be able to insure it on your home contents policy, but this will need to be listed separately if it is an expensive watch.
You could also get separate watch insurance from a specialist insurer, but you’ll need to contact a broker or search the internet for that.
It can be a good idea to take your luxury watch to a watch specialist to help maintain its quality because they can help keep the lubricating oil in the mechanism working well, which could minimise any repair costs.
Getting the right level of cover
According to data from MoneySuperMarket, jewellery is the second highest value item that people list – after watches – when getting quotes for contents insurance. Contents insurance is important if you want to protect the items in your home, so remember to include your jewellery when you get a quote as it is something that is likely to be targeted if you were to become a victim of burglary.
To get the right level of jewellery cover, you need to know how much your jewellery is worth.
Jewellery is among the top items consumers are looking to add to their home insurance policy when searching for a quote and it’s the second highest value item in terms of cover value, according to MoneySuperMarket data January – June 2018.
Specialist cover for jewellery collections
If you own a large collection of expensive jewellery, you might need to consider paying extra for a policy with a higher overall contents value and higher single item limits.
Or alternatively, get separate insurance through a specialist insurer – you can find specialist insurers via a broker or by searching online. The item limits are typically much higher if you take out specialist cover, and some companies don’t have a limit on single items at all.
So if you wanted your insurance to cover up to £50,000 of jewellery, this could cover your whole collection.
A separate policy like this should cover items whether at home or abroad, though there may be some conditions attached to worldwide cover, and some won’t cover items abroad at all. For instance, the insurer might insist items are kept in a locked safe, or that you must wear them at all times. Always be clear on what’s included and choose a policy that’s right for you.
Also check that your jewellery is insured against accidental damage or less. Doing so means you’ll be able to make a claim if you accidentally damage your valuable items.
You might want to make sure the policy lets you choose your own jeweller too - should you need to get a replacement. Some policies will only give vouchers for high street jewellers, which might not cover things like a custom-made ring. Taking a photo of your item can also help the chances of your claim being approved, should you ever need it.
Get a correct valuation before you insure
Being accurate with your valuations means you can be sure you’re completely covered, and not overpaying for your insurance.
Expensive watches and rings can often be worth more now than when you bought them. So if you’ve had certain items for many years, it’s worth getting them valued before taking out a policy as the value of precious metals and gems has increased over the years.
If you get a valuation, this can help give you peace of mind that your valuables will be insured for the correct amount, and you won’t be disappointed if you have to make a claim later. For example, if your engagement ring was last valued 10 years ago at £1,000, it could now be worth £2,000 - but the insurer will stick to the original valuation if you haven’t told them otherwise.
It’s a good idea to have expensive jewellery and watches appraised every two years by a jeweller accredited by the National Association of Goldsmiths. Make sure you store the certificates in a safe place, just in case you do need to show them to an insurance provider.
Antiques, art and other collectibles also vary in value according to market and economic conditions – so if you have a collection, you should also have it re-evaluated every few years just to be sure – and keep the valuation papers with you. Because an outdated valuation with no proof could lead to disappointment if you have to make a claim.
Tips to help keep your jewellery safe
There are a few things you can do to help keep your jewellery safe - and to help make sure any claim on your contents insurance policy for jewellery is accepted if you ever need it - including:
- Declaring valuable items: always tell your insurer about any items of particular value. If you miss something, you could end up with an insurance shortfall, or even invalidate the policy.
- Keep receipts for valuable items: as proof of the purchase price, should you ever need to show your insurance provider.
- Up-to-date valuations: make sure valuations are up-to-date – and store the certificates in a safe place. Expensive jewellery should be valued every two years by a jeweller that’s accredited by the National Association of Goldsmiths.
- Take photographs of your valuable items: they can help insurers process your claim more easily.
- Keep valuable jewellery in a safe or lockable cabinet: to keep them more secure when you’re not wearing them, and don’t leave them on display where they can be seen.
Comparing jewellery insurance policies
It’s important to compare quotes from different insurers to get a good deal on your jewellery cover. Enter your details into MoneySuperMarket's home insurance comparison tool and add any items of jewellery that cost over £1000 to compare contents insurance policies that include jewellery cover.
Different insurers will offer different levels of cover, and at varying premiums and excess fees, so it’s a good idea to compare features. Some providers might also offer accidental damage cover as part of the policy and personal possessions cover for content items outside the home, so it could be a good idea to consider this if you think your jewellery might be at risk.
It’s important to make sure the cover level value will properly protect all your home contents – including your jewellery. And if the maximum claim amount you can make doesn’t cover your items of jewellery, you might want to consider taking out specialist jewellery cover.