How much would it cost you to replace your furniture, clothes, electronic equipment, and kitchen items if they were lost or damaged during a move? Are these items covered by insurance? Here is what you need to know.
If you try to ballpark the value of all your possessions, you’ll likely come up short. This is one reason you need a household inventory — so you can purchase adequate insurance for your possessions during a move.
Does your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance cover possessions during a move?
Several weeks before you move, check with your insurance company to see if your possessions will be covered during a move. Here are some questions to ask:
- What type of damage is covered? Theft, fire, water damage, damage from dropped boxes? (Most policies will not cover anything they wouldn’t cover in your home. If you —or your movers — drop a crystal vase during the move, your homeowner’s policy is not likely to cover it.)
- Is the coverage limited by a dollar figure or a percentage of the total coverage?
If you are selling one home and buying another, there may be a lapse of coverage if the closings are several days apart. You may need to purchase additional coverage.
Will your moving company insure your possessions during a move?
According to the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA), movers are required to cover the items that they move for a minimum of 60 cents per pound, per article. The association’s website gives this example: If a 10-pound stereo component, valued at $1000 were lost or destroyed, the mover would be liable for no more than $6.00.
This level of liability, which comes at no additional cost, is called Released Value of 60 Cents Per Pound Per Article. As you can see from the example, this level of liability is typically not sufficient.
Most moving companies also offer Full Replacement Value Protection, according to AMSA. You will pay for this level of liability, which requires the mover to repair or replace the item. Ask your mover for details about cost and limitations — especially for items that exceed a value of $100 per pound, such as jewelry.
Movers may also offer to sell or procure additional liability insurance for your items. Make sure you understand the coverage and get copies of the insurance documents.
What if you are not hiring a moving company?
If you are moving your own possessions, you may be able to purchase cargo insurance from the same company that leases moving trucks and trailers. As with all insurance, make sure you understand coverage, exclusions, and deductibles.
Allconnect can assist with your move by offering free mover quotes, an online change of address form, and help transfer your essential home services. You can also compare services available at your new address to make sure you are getting the best deal. See tips to help you during your move.