Philbin Insurance Group
(617) 389-9400

Bought a High Value Item

High Valued Jewelry, Watches, Furs, Guns, etc.

She'll love it. Of course she will. And, of course, she'll say yes…You've talked about getting married, starting a family…and you agreed on everything. She'll say yes. She'll love the ring.

So why, WHY is this so nerve-wrecking? You asked her father. You've got the ring. You got your plan. You've made the reservations.

You've thought of everything…Even planned a little surprise party 'afterwards', to celebrate with family and friends. And, you booked a hotel room for the weekend getaway. The “pre-honeymoon", so to say. So, it's all set. Right?

As your insurance agents, we have to say: It sounds absolutely perfect. Except for one detail: Did you get insurance for the ring?

High-value items are insured as part of the “personal property coverage" on a standard homeowner's or renter's policy, but only to certain limits. If the value of an individual item (such as an engagement ring) exceeds the stated limit, there is no coverage for the difference…unless you purchased a “scheduled personal property" endorsement.

This advice applies not only for jewelry, but also for antiques, art, high-value rugs, coin collections, firearms, and certain other items.

Jewelry is by far the most common high-value item to be insured. (That's why we'll keep the focus on it in this article.) But if you have or buy an expensive item that fits any of the categories above, and you're wondering whether it is covered on your homeowner's policy, give us a call. We're happy to find the adequate protection for your valuables.

Something sparkly for the one you love? Get it insured.

It is a beautiful ring…princess cut stone with two smaller diamonds left and right, and a delicate white-gold band. You picked it up already because you are planning to propose to your beautiful girlfriend on your long-awaited trip to Mexico. So now the ring is at your house. In its box. In the drawer. Under the shirts. In the back corner. Safely tucked away. Just…how safely? And, the sheer thought of taking it out of its hiding place, to transport it all the way to Mexico makes you sweat a little bit. What if you lose it? Or, heaven forbid, what if it's stolen?

Well, first of all, Congratulations on your upcoming engagement! Of course, once you have the ring in your possession, things start to sink in…

Don't let your lifetime of happiness get off to a rocky start in the event the ring gets lost or stolen. A typical homeowner's policy only covers jewelry up to a limited amount. As soon as the ring is in your possession, it is time to protect it by adding a scheduled jewelry endorsement to your homeowners insurance or renters insurance policy.

One important note: If you and your girlfriend don't live together, the insurance question can become a little more complicated. As long as the ring is still in your possession, the ring can be insured on your homeowner's or renter's policy. But as soon as you propose – and give the ring to your fiancée – it becomes hers, and must be insured on her homeowner's or renter's policy. When in doubt, just give our office a call.

Of course, this advice doesn't apply only for an engagement ring. It is wise to protect all your expensive jewelry or watches with a jewelry endorsement. Are you going to give her those diamond earrings she's been dreaming about for Christmas? Is he receiving a Rolex for Father's Day or his well-earned retirement? Please get them insured.

Coverage for expensive jewelry is available at a surprisingly low cost. Simply hold on to your receipt, or obtain a professional appraisal to determine the value of the item. Your team at Philbin Insurance Group can help you take care of all the rest.

Inherited a jewelry box? Please follow this advice

You didn't know Aunt Bertha well. You only saw her on rare occasions like holidays and the family reunion five years ago. But you remember her as a jolly lady who loved her afternoon tea, hats with big flowers, and big jewelry to go with them. You liked Aunt Bertha. For your birthday, when you turned 10, she sent you this lovely bracelet with colorful charms that you adored. You returned the favor, sending her a long thank-you note, including a hand-drawn watercolor picture of her favorite flowers, peonies.

She must have been very touched by this, because now, 20 years later, she passed away and left you her entire jewelry box. All of it. You're not sure what to do with it…most of it seems like big costume jewelry. Nothing too valuable. And not your style, really, either.

3 years later it's still in your garage, and you're thinking, it may be time to take it all to the thrift store. No offense, Aunt Bertha…

If you inherited jewelry, do yourself a favor and be sure to get it appraised. Nine times out of ten, people assume that the jewelry they inherited is costume jewelry and of little value. And nine times out of ten, they are wrong.

Our office recommends an appraisal whenever you're in doubt. We have even heard of a bracelet being appraised that turned out to be very rare Scottish jewelry from the mid-1800's, valued at $4,500 – and it was a piece that was just about to be given to the Thrift Store! Don't let that happen to you!

Not only that: The cost of gold and platinum has been on the rise over the past years, so if you have jewelry that has been appraised five or more years ago, it may have appreciated in value and might need to be appraised again.

Any individual piece of jewelry that is valued at more than $1,500 should be insured on a special jewelry endorsement that is added to your homeowner's or renter's policy. In insurance terms, we also call this “scheduling" your jewelry.

In order to schedule a piece of jewelry, we ask that you provide a picture of the item, and either a receipt or a professional appraisal. Depending on your insurance company, cost usually runs about $12 per $1,000 value.

Even though we are insurance agents, there is a non-insurance alternative for high valued jewelry that you may be keeping to pass on to future generations, but don't plan to use now. Investing in a safe deposit box for items that are seldom used may be less expensive than scheduling. Just make sure to let us know if fashions change and you've brought some of those nostalgic pieces home to use regularly.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to give us a call 617-389-9400. We are here to help!

Protect against mysterious disappearance & loss of stones

Your family heirloom wedding band is precious. And valuable. You love it, and so it's not tucked away safely at the bank, or even in your jewelry box. It goes with you wherever you go. It may get taken off every so often, when you go swimming, are making meat loaf, or are cleaning the windows…but usually you're wearing it all of the time.

That means it's exposed to whatever you are doing, and it's at risk from all the dangers that come with the world out there: It could get lost or simply slip off your numb finger as you take off your glove on that freezing winter day. Not to mention, the stone could fall out of its setting.

70% of all personal property claims involve jewelry. The good news: Jewelry is usually covered up to $1,500 per item on a standard homeowners insurance or renters insurance policy.

The not-so-good news: A typical homeowners insurance policy does not cover losses due to mysterious disappearance or loss of a stone from its setting.

The even-better solution: Scheduling jewelry items over $1500 in value and adding a “special form" endorsement to your home insurance policy for lower valued items will cover these common losses.

And, if an item is scheduled, no deductible will apply to your loss! Please give us a call 617-389-9400 for more information.
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