Author Topic: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf  (Read 4701 times)

dragoncar

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Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« on: October 31, 2013, 07:47:03 AM »
Kinda random, but I was researching insurance and found the following comment:

Quote
I'm a high net worth personal insurance broker, so I can give some guidance here. ... Contents at $50,000, only if your replacing everything by shopping at Walmart. A woman's wardrobe can easily get to $50K. A rough guide for people in NYC making more than $250K per year, for every 1,000 square feet you have fully furnished, $200K in contents.

http://streeteasy.com/nyc/talk/discussion/19213-homeowners-insurance-for-a-nyc-co-op-how-much

The sad thing is, I don't doubt that full replacement value for all the crap in most houses is really high.  It's part of the answer to "where did all the money go?"

Self-employed-swami

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2013, 07:58:51 AM »
We have a 1700sq ft house, and we have contents insurance for $200,000 CDN.

My Dad just went through an insurance claim for his basement and garage (which had no actual furniture in it, just the stuff in storage/tools/old fishing gear/holiday decorations) and his claim with insurance was over $28,000, not including the furnace and hot water heater/all the electrical stuff.

He was lucky that he didn't have to replace his whole house, like some people in the town where he lives, but it really can add up quickly.  We don't buy lots of stuff, but we do buy quality things (and have received quality hand-me-downs for our future kids, which we are storing in our crawl-space until we need them).  Insurance insures the purchase cost for replacement, not the cost that you could get something at, by shopping around, and buying used. 

I am likely over-insured slightly, but in this case, since it wouldn't cut our premiums much, I am just going to leave it.  DH has a lot of woodworking tools, and I have my Mom's jewellery (not worth *that* much, but still could add up quickly).

jba302

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2013, 08:30:33 AM »
DH has a lot of woodworking tools, and I have my Mom's jewellery (not worth *that* much, but still could add up quickly).

Please have this stuff documented. It is absolute hell to deal with a property claim when someone submits a bagillion 50 year old tools for a property loss with no doc's to show ownership.

Self-employed-swami

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2013, 10:04:34 AM »
DH has a lot of woodworking tools, and I have my Mom's jewellery (not worth *that* much, but still could add up quickly).

Please have this stuff documented. It is absolute hell to deal with a property claim when someone submits a bagillion 50 year old tools for a property loss with no doc's to show ownership.

After dealing with my Dad's tool/equipment list, I am going to get DH to do this.  Thanks for the reminder.

kudy

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2013, 10:45:45 AM »
I've always been confused on this... can someone run me through what exactly documenting belongings entails when it comes to an insurance claim? Do I have to have a receipt from  the initial purchase?

dragoncar

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2013, 10:56:29 AM »
I've always been confused on this... can someone run me through what exactly documenting belongings entails when it comes to an insurance claim? Do I have to have a receipt from  the initial purchase?

Some people just go through their house with a video recorder.  You need to show you had it in you house, brand, etc.  not the price you paid

Make sure to stAge the house with a bunch of expensive stuff first

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2013, 11:02:55 AM »
My Dad needed a list of what he had, when he bought it (approximately) and an estimate of it's cost.  Insurance asked us to take pictures of anything we could, specifically appliances. They haven't asked for pictures of anything, other than the appliances.  They gave him a depreciated cash value of most things, like his old TV, and then a replacement value.  They paid him out the depreciated value, and then if he opts to replace things within a year of the loss, he can send in the receipt and get the difference between the replacement cost, and the depreciated value.


jba302

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2013, 12:34:21 PM »
I've always been confused on this... can someone run me through what exactly documenting belongings entails when it comes to an insurance claim? Do I have to have a receipt from  the initial purchase?

Not unless it's surprisingly expensive, like an antique something or $30,000 couch (in which case, you have it insured on a floater and your agent helped you on this). We have programs that give average price / degradation of goods and are well aware that you aren't going to take pictures of your purchases or keep the receipts in a fire-proof safe (even though it would help!). If you have a receipt, it is ideal. If you have the original box, or the completed warranty card, or a photo that happens to have the item in the background (this ends up being very common), or the owners manual, it's mostly enough proof. There's also a general threshold, so if someone picks up your tool box that had a bunch of $30-$80 tools in it, I would probably just write you an ACV check for the $500 and move on with my day.

My suggestion here was heightened because the woodworking tools can be uncommon, there's a shitload of them in a small area (higher risk with theft and fires), and they are never going to remember every individual item after the fact (pissing off the claimant when "the insurance company didn't pay me because I can't remember") and it's going to take an eternity running back and forth on item valuation (frustrating everyone). Collections of things should be well documented with photos and descriptions, just lay a bunch of them out on the floor for the photo and write up a google doc spreadsheet.


Also, just because i'm thinking of it - nobody should keep their jewelry in a single jewelry box either. The largest loss I saw in property was $300,000. It took 15 seconds. A yard worker used a sledgehammer to break down a front door, ran upstairs, grabbed one jewelry box, and ran. Keep cheap crap in there, store the good stuff in varied areas.

Self-employed-swami

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2013, 09:00:40 PM »
My Mom's jewellery is in our safe.

gooki

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #9 on: November 01, 2013, 03:33:36 AM »
I happily under insure on contents. What will it take for complete loss? A sever earthquake? Nope. A raging fire would possibly do it, but theres a high chance my garage, shed and sleep out would be saved.

capital

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #10 on: November 01, 2013, 11:19:21 PM »
You have to be pretty damn rich in NYC to have more than 1,000sqft, especially in Manhattan. Rich people generally own expensive things.

kudy

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Re: Insurance broker: estimate $200k in contents per 1000sf
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2013, 11:14:36 AM »
I've always been confused on this... can someone run me through what exactly documenting belongings entails when it comes to an insurance claim? Do I have to have a receipt from  the initial purchase?

Not unless it's surprisingly expensive, like an antique something or $30,000 couch (in which case, you have it insured on a floater and your agent helped you on this). We have programs that give average price / degradation of goods and are well aware that you aren't going to take pictures of your purchases or keep the receipts in a fire-proof safe (even though it would help!). If you have a receipt, it is ideal. If you have the original box, or the completed warranty card, or a photo that happens to have the item in the background (this ends up being very common), or the owners manual, it's mostly enough proof. There's also a general threshold, so if someone picks up your tool box that had a bunch of $30-$80 tools in it, I would probably just write you an ACV check for the $500 and move on with my day.

My suggestion here was heightened because the woodworking tools can be uncommon, there's a shitload of them in a small area (higher risk with theft and fires), and they are never going to remember every individual item after the fact (pissing off the claimant when "the insurance company didn't pay me because I can't remember") and it's going to take an eternity running back and forth on item valuation (frustrating everyone). Collections of things should be well documented with photos and descriptions, just lay a bunch of them out on the floor for the photo and write up a google doc spreadsheet.


Also, just because i'm thinking of it - nobody should keep their jewelry in a single jewelry box either. The largest loss I saw in property was $300,000. It took 15 seconds. A yard worker used a sledgehammer to break down a front door, ran upstairs, grabbed one jewelry box, and ran. Keep cheap crap in there, store the good stuff in varied areas.

Thanks - this is helpful. I have very few things that I paid a lot of money for - nearly all my furniture was free. Sounds like at least photos of each room is in order.