CHICAGO - Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and whether you’re planning on popping the big question or surprising your honey with a gift he or she will cherish, make sure you protect your new bling with insurance coverage, says the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America (PCI).
“Accidents happen, a ring can be lost or stolen and before you know it engaged bliss has turned into heart break,” said Christopher Hackett, PCI director of personal lines policy. “However, knowing that the ring is protected by insurance and can be replaced will give you peace of mind.”
With an average of $6,000 being spent on engagement rings in the U.S., it is important for consumers to know that a typical homeowners or rental policy generally only covers up to $1,500 if jewelry is lost or stolen. So if your sparkler cost more than $1,500, you should talk to your agent or insurers to get the additional coverage to protect and replace your ring.
“It is easy to add an engagement ring or jewelry to your policy with what is called an endorsement, said Hackett. “As you send lots of texts and spend time on the phone talking about your big announcement, remember to call your insurance agent or company and they will add that new bauble to your homeowners or renters insurance policy. That one phone call can make a major difference when the unexpected happens. And while you are at it, talk to agent about doing an overall insurance check up to be sure you have enough coverage on your home and cars.”
Take these five steps to keep you and your special someone celebrating the special moment for years to come because you had the foresight to protect it with insurance.
1. It all starts with a call/text/email/tweet/snap
As you share the news of your big gift with your inner circle, make sure your insurance agent is included on that exclusive list. Homeowners and renters insurance generally covers up to $1,500 if jewelry is lost or stolen. If you paid more than $1,500 for the ring, then you’ll want to make sure that it is insured with a special add-on policy or a separate insurance policy.
Tip: After purchasing any big ticket item it is important to make sure you still have the right amount of coverage.
2. Keep your receipts and other documents
After buying big purchases, such as engagement rings, jewelry, or expensive electronics saving your receipt may be the last thing on your mind, however it is critical to do so. You will need to document things such as how much you spent or its appraisal value. This will help save time if you ever have to file an insurance claims.
Tip: If you don’t want to worry about the paper receipt, take a picture with your smart phone and email it to yourself or save it to the cloud.
3. Ask your insurer lots of questions
Make sure that you understand the details of your insurance policy so that you will know what types of losses are covered. Does the policy cover common issues such as theft, damage or just plain losing the item? Will your insurance cover the full value of the ring or a portion of the cost to replace it if it is lost, damaged or stolen?
4. You’ve received your bling, now make sure it’s protected!
As soon as you put on your new swagger, you won’t imagine ever wanting to take it off. But reality will soon enough set in and you when it does, make sure you ask the right question — “is it insured?” If you purchase jewelry for someone who is not in your household, they should make sure it is insured under their name. Have a plan not only for who insurers the jewelry but for a safe storage location when you’re not wearing it. This includes when you’re traveling. Never check any valuables in your luggage when traveling.
5. Now is a good time to do an overall insurance check and conduct a home inventory
This is a good time of year to make sure any big ticket items or home improvement projects like remodeling your kitchen or room additions completed over the past year are accounted for in your insurance policy. Expensive items, such as jewelry, art collection or computer equipment may be covered by what is known as an endorsements or rider. With a new addition or major renovation you may want to increase your policy limits to ensure you have adequate coverage. Confirm that all major items covered by walking around your home and conducting a current home inventory. Make sure you include items in the garage as well.
Tip: Take pictures and/or videos of items in your home so you can account for items that are destroyed or lost if the worst does happen
Valentine’s Day Infographic: