Keeping valuables such as gold, precious stones, collector’s items, memorabilia and others, secured is a big task in today’s age where crime rates have soared owing to various factors such as high unemployment rates, loss of moral values, increasing social inequality, and other reasons. The Office of National Statistics reveals that in all 8.9 million crimes took place in 2011-12. While this represents a slight dip compared to the previous years, household burglary, as a sub- segment, has actually increased.
The Various Options
The obvious countermeasure to such statistics is to keep valuables in a secure place such as a safe, and installation security measures, such as, sensor alarms, and video cameras, to deter robbers. However, this is not a foolproof solution. Determined criminals have shown time and time again that even the best physical and electronic security measures have their own limitations and are not 100% foolproof. Even banks are not immune to robberies. Even otherwise, with people leading a busier lifestyle than before, the chances of them misplacing valuables or being careless enough not to secure them properly are high.
An alternative solution to investing in heavy security is to opt for household insurance or house content insurance. Such insurance insures the valuables against not just theft, but also against damages owing to fire or other natural calamities, and accidents, something, which renders safes or alarms ineffective. In many cases, the cost of insurance would be much less than the cost of deploying and maintaining extensive security.
Very often, the house content insurance is comprehensive, insuring not just the valuables, but also personal possessions, such as furniture, designer labels, electronic gadgets, and the like, which would also cost significantly to replace. Many policies cover expenses such as legal fees, besides reimbursing the actual value of the item.
In short, insuring valuables offers the owner absolutely peace of mind, with the knowledge that even if some thief does manage to break-in and get away with the valuables, or the valuables are destroyed for any reason, the insurance company would reimburse the Value of the valuables, with which the valuables can easily be replaced.
Key Considerations When Availing House Content Insurance
While securing home insurance is the right thing to do, it is also important to take the right insurance, without which the entire purpose of the insurance may be defeated. The first consideration is to decide on the value of the insurance. It is foolhardy to cut a few dollars of premium, by insuring for a lesser value than what the valuables cost. The benefits of insurance realize only when the payout made by the insurance company is sufficient to replace the loss. Assess the valuables on hand to determine the replacement cost, before taking insurance. Valuables such as gold may fluctuate, and as such, the market value at the time of availing the insurance, makes for a good base value. Other valuables, especially collector’s items, tend to increase in value with age.
The next important consideration when taking house content insurance is to secure the best offer. Search the Internet, classifieds, and other sources, for the best home insurance quotes. In today’s competitive age, multiple providers will offer competitive quotes. Take time to compare quotes and decide on the best one. Consider aspects such as no-claim bonus, which may make a big difference on the total premium outgo.
When comparing insurance quotes, consider factors other than the premium value. Consider the credibility and reputation of the provider, the ease of doing business with them, and the ease of making claims. More importantly, read the terms and conditions carefully. Whether the insurance company would actually make good the loss depends on the inclusions and exclusions in the insurance contract, and the comprehensiveness of the paperwork. A low priced quote that excludes payout for almost all instances of theft is worthless. Similarly, many insurers may not honor claims, if the policyholder has failed to provide details of the high value items, when making out the contract.
*This post was submitted by Tanya K.
* Photo by CoffeeGeek on Flickr