Everything you need to know about moving insurance
If you’re in two minds about getting moving insurance, you should know that accidents happen. There is no way to be absolutely sure about the safety of your belongings, no matter how professional or experienced your mover is. With that in mind, an insurance policy does seem as a sound choice to make. However, if you need to choose among options such as “full value protection”, “released value protection” and similar, and you have no idea what the agent is talking about, we’ll help you clarify the matter. Before you put your signature on a policy and seal the deal, find out everything there is to know about moving insurance.
What can you expect from moving insurance?
Moving insurance functions on the basis of valuation coverage. The extent of damage the policy will cover depends on the amount of liability a mover is willing to accept. Hiring a professional mover to conduct your relocation does not automatically mean that your belonging are fully covered. There are two types of protection you can expect from a moving company:
- Full Value Protection
- Released Value Protection
Full Value Protection
Even though it sounds great to have “full protection”, it’s not all peaches and cream. This kind of valuation coverage is more comprehensive than the other two, but it has its limitations. Despite the fact that your mover agrees to reimburse you for the value of items that suffered damage in the transport, the reimbursement will only cover their current value. In other words, if you purchased a leather sofa at an extortionate rate some 10 years ago, you are not going to get the same amount of money from a moving company. It’s as simple as that.
Released Value Protection
This is the cheapest kind of protection you can purchase. It requires no additional expense, but you have to sign a statement on the bill of lading to agree to it. It means that the mover will compensate you according to the weight of the item, but you can expect no more than 60 cents per pound per article. This is the basic kind of insurance with minimal participation. However, the minimum you have to pay per item depends on the state regulations. New Jersey has increased the minimum to $1 per pound. But if you’re relocating to a city such as NYC, you can still get only $6 for a 10-pound item that can actually cost hundreds of dollars. Not much of a satisfaction!
Your claim may not be accepted in all cases
Whether your mover provides you with a full coverage or the extent you have mutually agreed upon, there are cases in which you submit your claim in vain. Moving companies can refuse to settle a claim in some of the following cases:
- Instead of opting for professional packing services, you have decided to do it yourself. In this case, you may not be able to establish your claim against a mover and prove that they’re the chief culprit.
- You have not reported damage immediately after the move.
- In case of a natural disaster such as hurricane, tornado or an earthquake.
In addition, you should inform your movers about any items of extraordinary value. Personal effects and valuables require extra care and protection. It’s a good idea to store these items separately and take care of them personally. For the peace of mind, find a cheap storage and keep them until the whole hassle is over. Let’s be realistic. You cannot expect a moving company to reimburse you for the value of fine arts pieces, jewelry and similar.
For an extra fee, you can get additional coverage from your mover or an insurance company that offers this kind of policy. However, they may have their own terms and conditions. If you decide to do the packing by yourself, your mover won’t be accountable for the damage that can occur along the way.
In addition, when hiring an insurance company, be ready for unpleasant surprises. If you fail to read the small print, it can turn out that they only cover damage in the transport. So if your modern glass coffee table breaks while being loaded into a truck – say goodbye to reimbursement.
Choose a reliable mover in the first place
First of all, choose a reliable moving company. Accidents can happen, but some movers take all the precautionary measures to avoid them. For example, there are companies such as Big Apple Movers NYC, that specialize in fine art and antique relocation, which automatically means they employ highly qualified staff trained to deal with extra delicate items. Do yourself a favor. Hire professionals to pull off the job and you may easily go with the standard value coverage and have no worries.
Read the small print
Carefully inspect the small print whenever you need to sign a moving contract or an insurance policy. In addition to possible hidden costs, it can contain terms on limitations as to the insurance coverage.
Make sure you are familiar with all the terms of your agreement before you seal the deal. After you put everything in writing, there’s no turning back. Choose wisely and do everything in your power to avoid any chance of accident. Get recommendations and read testimonials. That is the best way to protect yourself and your belongings from any kind of harm.