Here’s the deal……the majority of homeowner’s policies only cover jewelry up to a one-thousand dollar limit. Most decent policies will cover your contents-your “stuff”-at full replacement cost, but will place specific limits on various categories of items. Replacement cost is simply the cost to replace an item new, at current prices. Jewelry is one of the primary types of items that are limited in home policies. This is really something that you need to be aware of when you buy homeowner’s insurance, or you could end up getting only a fraction of the actual value of an item back if it is stolen.
Now, if you have a decent insurance agent, he or she will bring up this issue with you and ask if you have any jewelry that exceeds that value limit. Chances are, you do have jewelry that exceeds the $1000 threshold, either individually or combined. So, what do we do to protect that engagement ring, anniversary band, or that awesome watch? Your agent has the ability to name specific pieces of jewelry for specific replacement values on your homeowner’s policy. This is very easy for the agent to do; all that is required is an appraisal of the specific item that the agent can add to the file. The agent can then specifically name that item in the policy for up to the value stated in the appraisal. Your only limiting factor is the appraised value, which the agent will not be able to exceed. In insurance lingo, this is called “adding a floater” to the policy. Various other valuable or unique items can be specifically added to your homeowner’s policy with other floaters.
In general, the cost of a jewelry floater is minor and will not have a dramatic impact on your annual homeowner’s premium. With many insurance companies, you can get a lot of coverage on a jewelry floater for an additional $90.00 per year.
One detail to keep in mind; for your agent to be able to add a jewelry floater for the amount of protection you want, you must provide an appraisal of that specific item to establish value. Beyond that, it would be a great idea to keep the original copy of that appraisal and a picture of the jewelry in a fire-proof container.