Moving and storage begins when your property passes into the custody of a public carrier, including United States government trucks, aircraft and vessels, or a storage facility. Your property must be under a bill of lading, a mover’s contract, baggage check, or other form of shipping or storage document.
Some of the questions to ask about moving personal property insurance are:
1. Does my homeowners or rentals insurance policy cover items damaged or lost while in transit?
A: A standard homeowner’s insurance policy includes coverage for personal belongings.
“Furniture, clothes, sports equipment and other personal items are covered if they are stolen or destroyed by fire, hurricane or other insured disaster. Most companies provide coverage for 50 to 70 percent of the amount of insurance on the structure of a home. This part of the policy includes off-premises coverage. This means that belongings are covered anywhere in the world, unless the policyholder has decided against off-premises coverage. Expensive items like jewelry, furs and silverware are covered, but there are usually dollar limits if they are stolen. To insure these items to their full value, individuals can purchase a special personal property endorsement or floater and insure the item for its appraised value.” (iii.org)
The list of perils you’re protected against could be from theft, fire, lightning, explosion, vandalism, riot and falling aircraft to replacing possessions without a deduction for depreciation.
Ask your agent what’s covered during your move
- What kind of coverage does my policy provide while I move from my old home to my new home?
- How long is the coverage good for?
- What if I move over several days, how long will items be covered at both locations?
- Under what circumstances is loss or damage to my belongings covered?
- What kind of damage is covered — and what isn’t?
- What kind of deductible do I pay if all of my personal belongings are lost or destroyed?
- Is my home or renter insurance coverage limited while my items are in transit?
- Would it be wise for me to buy moving insurance?
2. Does homeowners or renters insurance policy covers my personal property if it’s put in storage?
A: Insurance coverage for belongings in a storage unit is typically provided by the “off-premises” personal property coverage in a homeowner’s policy. Covered perils typically include fire, lightning, theft and vandalism, according to the Insurance Information Institute (III).
3. Do I need to buy insurance if I am renting a moving truck?
A: It is recommended to purchase coverage for personal property while it’s in transit in the renting moving truck from the rental company. Make sure you ask about the limitations coverage, since this is different from company to company.
4. Should I rely on a new homeowner policy to cover my items in transit until they have reached the new home?
A: A new homeowner policy would normally only cover you for your personal property once you get to your new home, living a potential gap in coverage before you move in.
5. Does homeowners or rentals insurance policy covers my personal property if I just use my friends and not “hiring” them for the move?
A: The idea of holding friends financially responsible for damages while they were volunteering to help is not a common one. If something really valuable gets damaged, your friends may be able to compensate you for damages under the voluntary property damage clause of their home or tenant policy, or through their personal liability insurance.
6. Is the personal property covered under your homeowner policy when is in the possession of the moving company?
A: Some policies will not cover damage that occurs while the belongings are in the possession of the moving company or in transit.
7. Should You Buy Insurance From a Moving Company? What Are the Options?
A: Technically, moving companies can’t sell insurance, but under federal law they are required to provide valuation options.
All reputable movers will have different option available. Federal law requires that movers offer these three kinds of insurance: