Insuring Your Collection
You have spent years collecting and have invested quite a lot of money in acquiring your most treasured pieces. Then one night when you are away your house is burglarized or even worse catches fire. Your collection is lost - and while you are devastated the fact that you had your collection insured separately is going to take some of the hurt out of replacing them. Or did you?
Insuring your collection against fire, theft, or even flood, makes a lot of sense. The collections we are referencing are those that can total from the hundreds, to the tens of thousands of dollars.
A rider policy is an attachment to your regular homeowners insurance policy, that covers specific high dollar items, such as large collections of antiques, jewelry, baseball cards, or in this case, music memorabilia.
Without this special insurance policy, you may not receive fair compensation in the event of loss or damage. Check with your insurance company on the amount of coverage you have, and if you need a rider policy for your collection.
Document Your Collection
By documenting and having a complete and current inventory your collection, you are offering proof that you were in possession of specific items prior to their loss. After a break-in for instance, it may assist in the retrieval of the items. But more importantly will help in expediting an insurance claim.
The more documentation you have the easier it will be for not only obtaining an insurance rider, but offering documentation to support a claim if necessary. Detailed lists, photographs and/or video are all great ways to catalog your collection. It is also recommended that you save copies of this documentation some place other than your house. A relative's home, your office, or even a safety deposit box are great places to keep a copy of collection inventory documentation.
Perhaps as important as obtaining insurance in the first place, is insuring that you have adequate coverage on your prized possessions. Make sure that you have enough coverage and do an annual assessment of your collection. A great reminder is when your policy comes up for renewal.
Establish the Value of Your Collection
Insurance companies are reluctant to insure collections if they are not confident in value you have provided to them. It is recommended that when documenting your collection you reflect in great detail a description of each piece in the collection. Also reflect the "cost" and "market value". If you have receipts and/or a third party appraisal, these will all be helpful. If you would prefer to have a professional appraise your collection's worth, then find someone with knowledge on your specific collection. Or contact your insurance company and find out who they recommend for the job. They probably deal with professional appraisers on a daily basis.