There’s nothing worse than losing your home and all your belongings…..
Unless it’s finding out your insurance won’t replace it all.
Most home insurance includes a percentage for contents coverage. That would be your stuff:
So, if your house is insured for $300,000.00, you have up to $300,000.00 to rebuild it. To replace your things, generally the policy would include 70% for contents. That means you would get $210,000.00 worth of your stuff replaced.
There’s a potential problem, according to Pat Cummings of Capstone Construction, Inc. Capstone is a restoration company that frequently works with insurance companies and homeowners to fix damaged homes.
Pat poses this question to insurance agents:
“Is this policy going to cover what we in the restoration business call ‘a content rich environment’?”
Few of us throw things away as quickly as we could. And most of us collect something.
Pat: “Collectors gather all kinds of items, some valuable, some not. Hummel’s, dolls, sports cards, silver spoon collections, scale trains and cars, beer signs and every other kind of thing you can think of. I have seen match book collections, typewriter collections, tool collections, antique anything collections, lead army soldiers, plastic flowers and even a computer collection.”
I certainly understand this, my grandparents were serious collectors. They had a number of different things they collected. Even though we have gotten rid of a number of their collections, some remain stuck in a corner of the basement. Like my grandmother’s collection of fabric. She was an avid quilter. There are at least 10 large storage boxes of fabric. Would I replace it? No! But that leads to another issue.
Pat: “Often times they have large amounts of garbage.”
Or things we wouldn’t replace.
Pat: “Cleanup of which generally still falls under contents coverage.”
I’m definitely seeing a problem.
Pat: “Compulsive buying disorders (CBD) are reported to include about 5.8 percent of the general population in the U.S. This seems correct to me, as we have come across it quite a few times over the years. These people often have whole rooms dedicated to the storage of brand new racks of clothing, shoes and other items that still have the tags on them. We just completed a fire job that the customer has a compulsive buying problem. The $500,000.00 content coverage didn’t cover all the cleaning, storage and replacement of the contents because of the volume of high value contents.”
I found quite a few clothing items of my grandmother’s with tags still on them. In fact,--wince-- I have a couple in my own closet. You know those things that don’t quite look right on you now, but with a few tummy crunches, would look great?
Pat: “One other area that comes into play is the retirement age population. Often these people have had a lifetime of living to gather valuable contents and a large house. At retirement time often people move into a smaller dwelling, but the value of their contents don’t necessarily follow that trend. While coverage concerns of their dwelling may be smaller, the value of their contents may not have been reduced.”
I can see people outgrowing their contents coverage even without moving. My grandparents definitely outgrew their contents coverage.
Now the big question….How do we make sure that giant TV gets replaced?
Thanks, Pat, for all your help!
Posted by: Lara Wilson, Mount Spokane Insurance - MountSpokaneIns.com
& Pat Cummings, Capstone Construction, Inc. - Capstone247.com
Mount Spokane Insurance
We are an independent insurance agency handling over 80 different insurance companies. Lara Wilson does most of our blog posts. Any guest posts will have the guest blogger's name at the end of the post.