There’s nothing quite like seeing all your worldly possessions stuffed into a truck. Naturally, you worry and wonder about what shape your possessions will be in once they arrive at your new home. In the same way that you get health insurance coverage to safeguard your personal health, this is where moving insurance can help you sleep at night until everything is safely delivered and in its proper place. Accidents happen even to the most careful of people or moving companies. What follows is a primer on protecting your belongings during a move.
Do you need moving insurance?
This question has probably crossed your mind, for good reasons. It’s perfectly understandable why you might feel nervous about putting all of your household goods in the hands of strangers. What if they lose or damage or destroy your precious belongings? You may not be as concerned if you are moving down the street, but for a long-distance move, it’s certainly worth considering.
In certain cases, it’s advisable to get moving insurance. For example, you might have a lot of valuables or you’re moving during hurricane season to a state that might be affected and the chances of weather conditions damaging your possessions are more likely. For any number of those reasons, you should at least look into getting moving insurance.
What does moving insurance cover?
What your moving insurance covers will depend on the specifics of your policy. In general, moving insurance covers any damage done to household items while in transit (and possibly, storage). That means anything from an earthquake to accidental breakage, it’s all covered.
So, one of the most important questions to ask before hiring a moving company is what kind of liability it provides. You’ll want to make sure your belongings are covered in case of a mishap during the relocation. Your professional moving company should have more than one liability coverage option for you to choose from.
How much does moving insurance cost?
The cost of moving insurance will depend on key factors such as the value of your possessions and the type of coverage you select. The more coverage you get, the more you should expect to pay. As we outline below, the bare-minimum coverage called released value protection is typically included in your moving contract. The next-level option after the released value is the full value protection moving insurance. If you choose it, expect to pay about 1% of the total estimate of the value of your personal belongings. The cost of moving insurance purchased from a third-party insurer may be anywhere between 1% and 5% of your valuation estimate.
Does my homeowner’s policy cover the move?
Before you purchase moving insurance, we recommend checking your homeowner’s insurance policy to make sure you’re not already covered. Don’t just assume that your homeowner’s insurance (or renters insurance) will cover all household goods while moving. Policies vary from carrier to carrier. In general, while a standard homeowners insurance policy will cover personal property and reimburse you for about 50% to 70% of the value of your belongings if they are damaged in a disaster, many homeowners insurance policies don’t cover goods that are in transit. Some policies may only protect your household goods while the movers are packing them in your home.
What are your insurance options?
Your mover is liable for the value of the goods you ask them to transport. However, there are different levels of liability. Knowing the difference, and your rights and responsibilities as a consumer will help you choose the right level of coverage and declare value on your belongings.
All moving companies are required by federal regulations to offer two types of coverage to consumers on out-of-state moves. There is also a third option, insurance coverage by a third party.