- . What jewelry and objects include “precious goods”?
- . The different insurance formulas
- . Two possible subscription methods
- . Take inventory of your belongings
- . Authentication and expertise
- . Steps in case of theft
Often benefiting from monetary as well as emotional value, jewelry and precious goods are particularly subject to theft but can also be destroyed in the event of a disaster such as a fire. How to insure these objects at their fair value? Is home insurance enough? If not, how to do?
What jewelry and objects include “precious goods”?
Insurers mean by “precious goods” jewels, precious metals, ingots, timepieces or jewels made of precious metals and/or precious stones that you may own. Can also be included ivory objects, fine stones mounted on jewelry or precious stones . They are to be differentiated from valuables which are works of art such as paintings, ancient manuscripts, and collections.
Each insurer like Centrestone establishes a minimum unit value (800 € for example) for a jewel to be considered as a precious good, criteria which are not necessarily the same according to the companies. Some differentiate between “precious possessions” and “valuables”, but not all. It is therefore best to refer directly to your contract , which should logically contain an “object of value” or “precious goods” part.
Several options are available to you depending on the value of your jewelry and the coverage you wish to benefit from.
Classic home insurance
It is entirely possible to go directly to your current multi-risk homeowner who will provide you with an extended warranty to insure your jewelry and precious objects.
- Advantages : the cost of insurance is lower and there is no need to canvass other insurers, or to subscribe to several contracts.
- Disadvantages : the jewels are only insured for a percentage of their value and you will have to, in the event of a claim, present your insurer with supporting documents proving the value of your jewels. A simple photo is not necessarily enough because it is then difficult to accurately estimate the value of the object.
Even when subscribing to the “jewelry and precious goods” option, the home insurance includes multiple exclusions, including:
- Jewelery theft cover is suspended during periods of inhabitation , starting from a number of days of absence fixed per year according to the insurance (generally, between 30 and 60 days.)
- Losses and theft of jewelery located in an outbuilding or any cellar, attic, etc. not directly connected to the main dwelling, are not covered, even if the “theft in outbuilding” option is taken out.
- The jewels are not insured during transport. Some contracts, however, offer an option theft by aggression during transport, a deposit or a withdrawal in a banking establishment.
In addition, precious goods are insured according to a use value and not a new value.
If the total value of your valuable assets exceeds 10% of the guaranteed movable capital , it will be more advantageous to turn to specific and specialized insurance contracts.
Specialized contracts in addition to home insurance
These contracts can intervene in addition to home insurance from a certain amount, 80,000 or 100,000 euros for example, and cover valuable goods against theft, accidental damage, water damage, fire. Many of them are distributed through specialized brokers.
Multi-risk prestige home
In the event that the total value of your belongings exceeds €150,000/250,000 , it may be in your interest to take out high-end home insurance. In addition to guarantees such as the replacement of your domestic workers in the event of their absence, the top-of-the-range multi-risk home insurance covers your assets of jewelery and precious objects up to an amount of €300,000 or more depending on the insurers. You will then be reimbursed on the basis of the new value of the good without obsolescence in the event of theft, damage, fall, breakage, loss, etc.
Two possible subscription methods
Declared value specific insurance
Specific insurance and prestige multi-risk home insurance can be taken out in two ways. The first is declared value insurance.
- Advantages: You have the possibility of subscribing to warranty extensions which will cover the loan of jewellery, breakage or even the restoration of the property. The cover is “all risks” (theft, fire, water damage, etc.) No expertise is necessary, but the estimate of the value must be detailed.
- Disadvantages: the value of the goods and jewelry covered by the insurance is estimated at the start of the contract, new objects will therefore not be affected. In the event of a claim, you will have to carry out an expert report and prove the existence and value of the stolen or destroyed property.
Specific insurance in agreed value
You can also turn to specific insurance in agreed value, which is more expensive but also more appropriate.
- Advantages : the value of the jewelry is fixed before the signing of the contract thanks to the visit of an expert who allows the insurer and the insured to come to an agreement. This value will be the basis on which you will be reimbursed in the event of a claim. The estimate also makes it possible to set the insurance premium. The jewelry and objects are thus listed in the contract which also fixes the compensation. Breakage and loan guarantees are also available.
- Disadvantages : the expertise is mandatory and the contract must then be modified if you acquire new valuable goods.
Take inventory of your belongings
Even if, when signing your contract, your insurer does not ask for a complete list of your belongings and jewelry, it is preferable and even imperative if you hope to be compensated to draw up a complete inventory of your possessions . To do this, take several photos of each property, taking care that the particularities (strokes, inscriptions, etc.) are visible, then write a description of the object (weight, shape, color, component, etc.). You can get help from an expert.
As soon as you acquire a new piece, carefully keep the certificates of authenticity, invoices, expert statements, etc. by scanning them for example or by making copies kept in a safe place.
Authentication and expertise
In parallel with this inventory, it will be essential to call on an expert to authenticate and appraise your goods and jewelry. This is not mandatory but very important in order to be able to prove the value of the goods you own and thus be certain that your insurer will reimburse you the desired amount and not just a part. It is also and above all very practical for having the jewelry inherited from your parents appraised, for which it is rare to have kept the invoices.
You can very well contact an independent expert, that of your insurer or even a prestigious auction house. In all cases, make sure that your insurer recognizes the expert and send him the documents so that he can keep a copy in your file.
It is not useless to renew this expertise from time to time in order to reassess the value of your property, the price of which may vary depending on the year.
Steps in case of theft
First of all, the theft must have taken place under the circumstances provided for in the contract (break-in, etc.) to be covered. The negligence of the insured (door left open) can lead insurers to refuse compensation.
When the theft is discovered, the insured must lodge a complaint within a period often set at twenty-four hours, then send the insurer the declaration of theft as well as the list of jewelery and property stolen by registered mail within two working days.
If the goods are never found, you will receive compensation. If they are, two scenarios arise: either you have not yet received the compensation and you must then recover your property, and any repair costs will be borne by the insurer. Either you have already received it, and in this case you can recover the goods but return the compensation, or refuse them and keep the payment.