- Here are some scenarios that require assistance from a personal property appraiser:
- Insurance Coverage – Are you aware that a written appraisal report is required by insurance companies to cover valuables classified outside the “general” household items category? Most people aren’t. Ask your insurance company for the specifics on your coverage, in writing, if it is not clearly stated on your policy. KNOW your homeowners policy limitations; make sure it specifies “retail replacement” for all items. IDENTIFY items of values that are not covered in general contents coverage, and get binders (endorsements) to cover those items. An insurance company may accept receipts for very recent purchases, however, in most cases, require a written appraisal.
- Damage Claims – Items that are damaged during a move or while secured in storage normally require a written appraisal from an unbiased party. The appraisal documents the details about the item (age, characteristics, pre-existing condition), the new damage, and current value to replace or repair.
- Rentals – If you are renting a “turn-key” apartment, you may want to insure your furnishings, wall art, and decorative art. Tenants may not care for your belongings as you would, and damages can occur.
Recording and protecting your valuables (hurricanes, theft, damage, etc.)
As you purchase new items for your home, it is smart to document your purchases, retain/scan receipts, and insure valuable items. At minimum, we recommend:
1. Home Inventories: photograph all items; record different angles and marks on vintage and antique items
2. STORE digital photographs in at least two places, including on-line and computer back up drive and the cloud, for an indefinite period of time.
3. USE A SAFE to store small valuables; bolt the safe to a floor or wall studs to prevent removal
4. Do not store valuables in unsecured places or places with climatic issues, such as a garage.