Owning a home also means buying a homeowner’s insurance policy that covers a wide range of things, from damage to your home to comprehensive personal liability. Homeowner’s plans also include coverage for personal belongings – although not entirely. For example, many insurers offer contents coverage up to 50 to 70 percent of your home’s insured amount, which is adequate to cover essential personal belongings.
However, insurance companies may also put limits on coverage amounts for expensive items, which is why many homeowners choose to have riders added to their policy. Riders boost coverage to your existing home insurance while ensuring that the insurer replaces valuable items at their appraised value. Here’s a look at some common home insurance riders you might consider adding to your existing policy:
A basic homeowner’s policy may cover as little as $1,000 for jewelry. But a jewelry rider – which is usually inexpensive – protects each piece of jewelry you own against damage, theft, and even mysterious disappearances. Make sure that every piece of valuable jewelry you own has an itemized listed value in your homeowner’s policy, so there’s no conflict if you have to make a claim.
Antiques and Artwork
Many riders provide excellent coverage for artwork and antique and, like jewelry riders, are inexpensive. If your artwork and antiques are valuable, consider adding this coverage to your policy.
Home Office Equipment
Many people choose to work from home, but coverage for home office equipment hasn’t necessarily kept pace. For example, most policies cap home office-related coverage at $1,000, which may not be enough to replace hardware and software. If you run your small business from home, make sure to discuss coverage options with your insurance agent.
This type of rider typically covers coins and also bank notes, gold, silver, bullion, and other valuable metals. Considering that the typical home insurance policy provides coverage for these items only up to $200, a rider is an option worth considering.
Many homeowner’s insurance policies provide limited coverage of oriental rugs which, like antiques and artwork, may be very expensive. Check to see how much coverage your policy covers and decide if adding a rider makes sense in case your rugs are damaged.
Sewer and Drain Back-Up
It depends on the insurance company, but this type of coverage may be excluded under your homeowner’s policy. If so, you may need to add a rider to your existing coverage because a backed-up sewer line or drain can cause extensive damage to your property.
If you own a gun collection, you may want to add a rider to your existing policy to protect it. The usual limit for this coverage on a standard homeowner’s policy is approximately $2,000.
Protection against theft of personal property may be limited under a basic insurance coverage policy. A rider is often available to provide adequate coverage.
Some other items that may be worthy of a rider on your existing policy include cameras, musical instruments, stamp collections, china and crystal, sports equipment, and wedding gifts.