As the years pass, we inherit many valuable items from friends and relatives – some of course we make like more than others!
Whether we like them or not, assuming we keep them, as we add items to our inheritance, it’s all to easy to forget to insure them.
It’s equally easy to forget to update our home insurance to cover them properly.
Many of our most valued possessions are handed down to us through our families.
Of course, not all of them are worth a lot of money.
Family photographs, autograph books, amateur watercolours and other treasures may have great sentimental value, but probably wouldn’t fetch a high price if you put them up for sale.
On the other hand, some may not be as valuable as you may think, or not quite what your family has told you they are.
Are your possessions as valuable as you think?
One of our team has an inkwell which was passed down through the generations, along with a story that it was given to an ancestor by Bonnie Prince Charlie.
That myth was shattered when the inkwell was dated to the 1790s – the decade after Charles Edward Stuart’s death (although it still fetched a respectable valuation).
The inherited possessions you really want to look out for are the ones that you might not think valuable, but are actually worth a surprising amount money.
Toys, old children’s books and items like these can be worth hundreds of pounds and be very difficult to replace.
Many people are actively collecting toys, looking to make money through investing in the likes of Lego, toy figurines, modern first edition books.
Of course it is possible that in time you may be the benefactor of these shrewd investments in collections!
Remember the true value of your possesions will change over time.
And if you’re like most people, your collection of inherited possessions doesn’t remain static.
Over the years, you can be left antiques, jewellery, fine art and other collections and heirlooms – and it’s easy to forget to get these covered by your home and contents insurance.
Indeed, even if you have specialist or high value home insurance, it’s crucial that you review your cover on a regular basis – because if the worst does happen, you can not only lose a valuable part of your inheritance but your insurance payout won’t reflect its true value.
So, if you want to make sure your inheritance is covered, these are some of the things you need to address.
Get your possessions valued – regularly
Many people with high net worth home insurance get their possessions valued – but then make the mistake of not reviewing those valuations for some years.
It’s much more difficult to track the value of your belongings than it is your savings.
While it’s easy to keep an eye on interest rates, the markets for jewellery, art, wine, antiques and other valuable items fluctuate up and down on a regular basis.
For example, jewellery prices have risen hugely in recent years as gold prices have trebled since 2004.
In addition, many items that you had valued at relatively modest amounts can suddenly become worth a lot more if they become fashionable or highly sought after.
Be sure to get your inherited and other belongings valued on a regular basis – or your insurance won’t cover their real worth.
Don’t forget to insure newly-inherited items
As time goes by, our collections of inherited items tends to grow.
Sadly, friends and relatives do pass away and may leave you quite an array of items.
When you inherit a large number of possessions, it’s relatively easy to remember to revisit your insurance cover.
Perhaps not quite so at the forefront of your mind if you simply inherit a single, albeit special, item from a loved one.
Remember too that family members and others may give you items like furniture, clocks, jewellery, watches and paintings while they’re very much alive.
These can soon become absorbed among your other possessions.
It’s a good idea to take stock of your collection every year before you renew your insurance – and to get new additions valued as necessary.
Choose flexible insurance
If your inheritance has left you with a lot of possessions, it’s a wise idea not to rely on standard home and contents insurance policies.
The terms of these policies can mean your valuables are far from adequately covered.
A much better plan is to take out tailor-made high net worth home insurance.
By doing this, you can ask an insurance broker to tailor policies to your personal circumstances – and give your home and possessions the up-to-date cover they need.
So don’t leave your inheritance to chance – get covered.
Get free high net home insurance advice today.