This is a serious problem.
I havwe carefully discussed this with my agent and he swears that as long as I have documentation (videos) of my stuff I am covered.
I have a 'replacement cost' apt dweller policy for $85,000. replacement cost and most of that money is stereo stuff and LP/CD?DVD collection.
(Ps I use a small 'local' insurance company)
Mine is insured at replacement value. I have a special ridder on my home owners policy. I have gone over my entire investment with my agent at my home and have submitted paperwork whenever I change a component.
Several years ago, we had a lightning strike that got my system. The insurance company sent an adjuster to photograph my stuff. They promptly sent a check to cover everything at full replacement value.
I believe in being up front with your insurance carrier. It costs a little bit more, but it allows me to relax.
Be sure to find out about coverage for power surge. I am in the business and know for a fact that coverage for electronics damaged due to power surge is $1,000 per item maximum. That could pose a serious problem for some audiophiles. The documentation is a good point and I always mention it to my clients. Photos, video, and receipts are all helpful if you have a loss.
take pictures have Reciepts and your good to go.
I just switched insurance carriers. Aside from better rates, one of the reasons for my decision to switch was a very reasonable "all-risk" rider for my audio electronics.
For the same covereage, my previous carrier was 3-4X more costly.
Review your equipment values and current coverage w/your agent...defiitely shop around!
Nick, is that the standard HO3 policy you are describing? I have replacement cost on building and contents but was unaware of any per item dollar limits...I'd take a huge loss if this is the case with my coverage.
All great info as mentioned above but don't keep your pictures and other documentation regarding your stereo system at home. Make copies of all your pictures and reciepts and give a set to your insurance person and keep a set in a safe place as a safe deposit box. Wouldn't want a fire or thiefs destroying the paper trail!
Replacement cost is very important and the only coverage I will sell but there is a specific limit for electronics damaged by power surge of $1,000. That is why my equipment gets powered down and unplugged during bad storms like tonight in Michigan. Larry, I would ask my agent. It isn't something that comes up often but it is in the policy wording with my company. As long as it is a covered peril and you have the proper coverage for your personal property you should be fine. The power surge is just what I would refer to as a gray area. Jsawhitlock is giving solid advice on having documentation outside of your home in case of a fire or a burglar steals the safe you have them in.
"Power surges" and lightning are two different issues. Lighting is almost always a covered peril under a homeowners policy covering a single family home. The issue in the event of lightning is whether your polcy provides replacement cost coverage, as opposed to "actual cash value", i.e. the depreciated value of your equipment. A "power surge" is when your power goes off and a surge subsequently enters your home when the power comes back on. This event is often not covered at all, even under the broadest of homeowners policies - or at best is subject to a low limit as Nicksgem10s referenced.
The best best is to specifically schedule your equipment on your policy. In most cases equipment specifically scheduled on a property "floater" or "rider" is provided "all risk" coverage and payout is based upon the "stated value" of the property as indicated in the floater. Also, specifically scheduled equipment is usually covered anywhere in the world , whereas property only generally covered under a Homeowners policy will be subject to a minimal coverage limit if it away from home.
I would certainly encourage that everyone review this issue with their agent to ensure proper coverage.
You know, I don't recall hearing of anyone on this forum that has lost an entire system to lighting or power surge. Has anyone had it happen?
I have a renter's policy and made sure the agent was well aware that a majority of the coverage would be the hifi (I don't have much else of significant value besides that and my computer). They had me take photos of all the gear clearly showing up-close names and model numbers where possible and I also photographed serial numbers where I could. I emailed this to them along with a written description of names, models and s/n's and they said this would all suffice. I'm covered on anything I'd expect to encounter though I'd have to double check surges--in any case I always power down and unplug during electrical storms! In any rate I take the coverage with a grain of salt knowing full well that insurance companies aren't in the business of handing people money willingly.
An insurance policy is a contract between you and the insurance company. They will pay you what they are legally obligated to pay you under the terms of that contract and no more. The problem is that most of us do not fully understand what their insurance policies cover - or more importantly - what they do not cover. Unfortunately, most of us first learn what's not covered when we make a claim against the policy. That's why its important to review our coverage needs in advance, to make sure we obtain the appropriate coverage.
Not every insurance company will schedule electronic equipment. Cruz123 are you an insurance agent? If not I would guess attorney or a very eductated consumer. Good thread everyone.
Nicksgem10s, how dare you call me an attorney :). Just kidding. No, I'm not an agent, but have been in the insurance industry for about 20 years.