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Declaring expensive valuables to your insurance provider

Declaring expensive valuables to your insurance provider

When you take out home contents insurance, it’s important to estimate the value of your contents as accurately as possible. To ensure you have the right amount of cover, you’ll need to declare any expensive valuables to your insurance provider.

Chris King
From the Home team
minute read
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Posted 20 FEBRUARY 2020

Why do I need to declare expensive valuables on my home contents insurance?

If you don’t declare expensive valuables, and just assume they’ll be automatically covered under your home contents insurance, you could lose out financially when it comes to making a claim.

The terms of a contents insurance policy nearly always include a single item limit – the maximum amount it will pay out for any individual item, no matter what its value is.

Typically, the claim limit for a single item is between £1,000 and £2,000. So if you own an expensive piece of jewellery such as an engagement ring that’s worth £5,000, you may find it’s not covered under your policy.

When applying for insurance, it’s vitally important to tell the insurance provider about any items you own where the value might exceed the single item limit.

Which expensive items should I declare?

When you’re getting a quote with Compare the Market, we’ll ask you to add any items with an individual value above £1,500 in the ‘specific items’ section. These could be:

Most of these are likely to be the first thing a burglar takes if you’re unfortunate enough to experience a break-in, so will be considered high risk items. They would also be expensive to replace in case of fire, for example.

Do I need specialist cover for my expensive valuables?

Not usually. Our insurance providers cater for a vast array of high value items. By declaring expensive valuables when you get a quote you’ll only see insurance providers who are happy to offer you cover for those items.

Remember, policies differ between insurance providers, that’s why it’s important to shop around to see what type of policy will adequately cover your needs.

Do I need to declare an expensive valuable if I already have a home contents insurance policy?

If you buy or receive an expensive item during your policy term, contact your insurance provider immediately and let them know. Ask them if it’s possible to change the single article or high value limits so the item will be covered. They should also let you know if the cost of your premium will change or remain the same.

What else can I do to protect my high-value items?

Other useful steps you can take to protect your high-value items include:

  • Take photos to increase the chances of an item being found if stolen, or if you want a copy made of the lost item. 
  • Keep receipts and valuation certificates to provide evidence of how much your expensive valuables cost. It's recommended that you should get a new valuation certificate every three years.
  • Have your valuable items re-valued on a regular basis, and let your insurance provider know if the value has changed. Over time, the value can go up or down depending on the item. If you forget to inform your insurance provider and the value goes up, you'll only be covered for the declared value.
  • Where possible, store your valuables such as jewellery out of sight in a securely locked safe.
  • Take home security measures to help deter burglars.
  • Consider personal possessions cover which includes damage, theft and accidental loss of your valuables when you take them away from home.
  • Decide whether you'd prefer a policy that will pay cash for your lost valuables, or one where the insurance provider will attempt to provide a replacement of the lost item.

How can I compare home insurance?

It's easy to compare your options right here with Compare the Market. Give us your details and let us know if you have any specific items you want to add to your quote. We’ll send you a selection of quotes from the UK’s leading insurance providers so you can find a policy that best suits your needs. You'll be able to see the limits for individual items from each provider.

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