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Personal property is a standard coverage on a homeowners insurance policy. This coverage covers your belongings — such as furniture and clothing — inside a home, and pays up to a certain limit if they are stolen or damaged by a covered peril. For high-value items, like jewelry, fine arts or musical instruments, you’ll likely need to add a scheduled personal property endorsement to your policy to insure them for their full value.
What is scheduled personal property coverage?
Scheduled personal property is an optional coverage in a homeowners insurance policy that allows you to insure high-value items separately from your personal property coverage. This is because certain items, like jewelry, watches, artwork and others, have limited coverage under the general personal property coverage and may not be fully covered if they are stolen or damaged in a covered claim. Instead, you have the option to include a rider or endorsement for these items to your home insurance policy.
Some homeowners insurance companies offer a package with increased blanket coverage that does not require an appraisal. If the basic policy includes coverage up to $1,000 for jewelry, for example, you may have the option to increase the coverage to $5,000 or more to cover all jewelry items. In contrast, a scheduled personal property endorsement allows you to list your specific high-value property with a specific cost associated with each piece. You’ll likely need to provide an appraisal or proof of value for this option.The scheduled personal property endorsement is optional, just like blanket coverage, and is an additional cost.
What does scheduled personal property cover?
Though specific limits and exclusions vary by insurance company and policy type, most homeowners insurance policies limit certain items in the standard policy. For example, if a high-value item is stolen, there may be a cap of $500 or $1,000 to replace it, and you could be subject to the homeowners policy deductible. However, if you schedule your personal property, you are covered for its full value on- and off-premises.
Another benefit of a scheduled personal property endorsement is the extra coverage you would not have under standard personal property coverage. With scheduled personal property, you also typically get:
- Accidental loss coverage, also called mysterious disappearance
- Accidental physical damage coverage
- $0 deductible for scheduled personal property claim (unless the policyholder chooses a higher deductible)
Had you just lost or misplaced your engagement ring, you would not have had coverage under a homeowners policy. But if it was scheduled, you may be able to recoup the cost without paying a deductible. Scheduled personal property is also generally covered under an open perils basis, which means all loss types are covered unless they are specifically excluded in the policy documents.
Types of valuables covered by scheduled personal property
This list is not meant to be exhaustive, but represents the most common personal property items that usually can be scheduled for their full value. After checking the limits on your homeowners insurance policy, consider scheduling these items if they are over the limit:
- Certain electronics (laptop, media equipment, etc.)
- Collections (cards, coins, stamps, etc.)
- Fine art
- Medical devices
- Musical instruments
- Rugs and tapestries
- Silver or goldware
- Sporting equipment
Generally, it is best to consider scheduling a high-value item that is not fully covered under a standard homeowners policy. If you wear your wedding ring and lose the diamond, it will not be covered under a homeowners policy. However, scheduling your ring could provide that coverage. It is up to you and your insurer to determine what is beneficial to schedule. In many cases, sentimental items that are lower in value may not be worth scheduling.
Do I need a scheduled personal property endorsement?
If you own a high-end bike, expensive jewelry or antiques handed down in your family, you may want to purchase scheduled personal property coverage. Review the policy sublimits for these items in your homeowners insurance policy to see if any of the items listed above are valued higher than the sublimits. If you only have coverage for $1,500 in jewelry but you have $15,000 worth, you may want to schedule the more expensive pieces — or all of them — if you want the broader coverage offered by the scheduled personal property endorsement.
You could also consider blanket insurance coverage with a higher coverage limit. For example, increasing jewelry coverage from the basic homeowners policy sublimit of $1,500 to $3,000 on a blanket policy may be all that is needed. Blanket coverage may be more cost-effective than scheduling each item. However, check with your insurer to understand if the items you want to insure can be covered under a blanket policy.
If you choose not to schedule your personal property or insure it with blanket coverage, claims will be limited to the same covered perils as your homeowners policy. You will also be subject to the homeowners policy deductible if you do file a claim, which affects the payment amount you receive to replace or repair the item.
Frequently asked questions
Scheduled personal property can cover high-value items not covered or not covered in their entirety by standard personal property coverage, but this endorsement may have some limitations, depending on your carrier. Scheduled personal property will not cover any items not specifically listed in the policy. You may want to get a professional appraisal for any items you plan to insure using scheduled personal property to ensure you have enough coverage.
Most insurance companies will ask for a detailed receipt, appraisal or other certified document proving the item’s value and listing the specific attributes of the item, including serial numbers and other identifying details. Photos of the items, including identifying markings, may be required and are a good idea even if not, to provide as much detail about the item as possible in case it is stolen or lost. A home inventory of all your possessions is generally a good idea to help you out with any home insurance claims you need to make.
If you do not own high-value items or if the homeowners policy sublimit is enough coverage for you, it may not be worth the extra cost for additional coverage. The price for scheduled personal property is determined by the carrier, item and value, but is generally inexpensive compared to the cost to replace an item, if it is replaceable.