How to Insure Jewelry: 4 Easy Steps
February 3, 2020
Ever wondered how to insure jewelry? Or how to get insurance for your engagement ring and wedding bands? Luckily, it’s not as big a chore as you may think. And it’s well worth the effort when you consider all the ways fine jewelry can get lost, stolen, damaged, etc. (Did you know, by the way, that cold temps make your fingers shrink? This is why people often lose rings when swimming or exercising outdoors in the winter.)
If you have uninsured jewelry, here are four steps to get you started:
Step 1: Save Jewelry Files/Photos
Save ALL of the receipts in a secure file. If you have a diamond grading report, great! Save that, too. Take photos of your expensive jewelry. Keep these documents all together, in a safe place and in a digital file, as part of your home inventory. Don’t have an inventory yet? Here’s how to make a home inventory.
Step 2: Get an Appraisal
When people ask us how to insure jewelry, they’re sometimes surprised to hear that bringing in a store receipt is not enough. Unfortunately, you’ll have an extra errand to run: getting an appraisal from a reputable jeweler. This often requires making an appointment and, yep, you guessed it… paying the appraiser/gemologist. Make sure you understand the process and price beforehand. For example, can the appraiser do the job in front of you, or will you need to drop your jewelry off? In the second case, allow yourself enough time to complete a “take-in” sheet and possibly a “plot diagram,” if necessary, so there are no concerns about your piece getting switched. Hourly rates for jewelry appraisal range from $50 to $150, according The Knot, which offers this helpful article on wedding ring appraisal
Step 3: Visit a Local Insurance Agent
Call your Massachusetts insurance agency and schedule an appointment to go over your jewelry coverage. You don’t have to visit the agent in person, but an office visit might be more convenient for those who need help creating or saving the digital files mentioned in Step One.
Step 4: Ask about a “Floater” or a “Rider”
There are two ways to cover expensive jewelry. Most people will already have some coverage through their MA home insurance or MA renter’s insurance. However, those policies are limited to a certain dollar value, usually just a few thousand dollars. So if your jewelry is worth more than $1,000 or $2,000, you might not have full coverage. If you wanted, you could ask your agent about raising these standard limits, but… Home insurance only steps in to help you with specific types of losses (e.g. burglary or fire). If you simply lose your jewelry, or inadvertently leave it someplace, you’d probably be out of luck. So we tell clients to ask about getting a “floater,” instead.
A floater or rider is a piece of coverage that gets added to your home or renter’s insurance. It can protect you against accidental losses–like a diamond stud that falls out of your ear or an engagement diamond that falls from its setting. (You would also be covered against theft, fire, flood, etc.) With floaters, you usually don’t have to pay any deductible, either–so no out-of-pocket costs when replacing your valuable jewelry.
The average price tag? For diamond jewelry, coverage runs about $1 to $2 for every $100 in replacement costs. Therefore, a 5,000 piece of jewelry might cost somewhere around $50 – $100 to insure every year. Not a bad investment, right?
Valentine’s Day is on the way! If you’re planning a sparkling surprise or you’re perhaps popping the question (so exciting!!!), don’t forget insurance for this special gift.
Still have questions on how to insure jewelry? Give our office a call or stop in and visit your agent to go over your coverage today!