What is a valuable?

A valuable, as defined under most home insurance policies, includes the following items:

  • works of art
  • jewellery
  • stamp, coin and medal collections
  • collections of gold, silver or other precious metals

Home insurance policies generally have a limit on ‘single valuable articles’ (that is, the maximum amount that can be paid out for one item). However, it’s important to make sure you are fully covered for any high-value possessions you may own. To this end, when you apply for a home insurance quote, you can specify items with values greater than the limit for a 'single valuable article' and increase the amount of cover provided by your policy.

How can I find out the value of an item?

While common household items such as TVs and laptops can be easy to value, other items such as unidentified pieces of art or family heirlooms you don’t know the origin of can be trickier. In order to make sure the latter items are adequately covered by your home insurance, it might be worth consulting a specialist. Indeed, some insurance providers will request you do this so make sure to use a qualified professional. The National Association of Valuers and Auctioneers (NAVA) could help you find an expert in your area.

Bear in mind, some items, such as works of arts or expensive collections, could increase in value over time so consider getting any relevant items valued every couple of years or so. Also, remember to check your sum insured each year and add any new items purchased to your schedule.

Keeping your valuables safe

While your home insurance policy could help recover the financial cost of any lost or stolen valuables, it won’t cover the sentimental value of some items you might own. Therefore, it’s worth considering the following steps which could help recover any possessions which have been lost.

  • Make sure you have up to date pictures of any valuable items you own
  • Also take a picture of any identifiable features on the item, such as scuffs or scratches
  • Use an ultraviolet pen to mark items

For more information on protecting valuable items in the home, please see our guide to home security. Additionally, check out our guide on how to value your contents for more tips on making sure your possessions are fully covered by your home insurance.

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