- Standard homeowners insurance covers jewelry that’s damaged by a problem listed in your policy, such as a fire, but there’s usually a $1,500 limit for jewelry theft.
- You can increase the coverage by scheduling your jewelry, which allows you to insure items for their full value, or by buying a standalone jewelry insurance policy.
- Specialized jewelry insurance covers damage and theft as well as accidental loss and “mysterious disappearance.”
Homeowners insurance will pay to repair or replace your jewelry if it’s damaged in a house fire or another problem covered by your policy. However, a standard home insurance policy caps coverage at $1,500 for the theft of jewelry, watches, and precious and semi-precious stones.
If your jewelry collection includes luxury pieces, you can purchase supplemental jewelry insurance to ensure their value is protected.
Inside this article
- Does homeowners insurance cover jewelry?
- What is jewelry insurance?
- How does jewelry insurance work?
- What’s the difference between scheduled and blanket coverage?
- What does jewelry insurance cover?
- What doesn’t jewelry insurance cover?
- How much does jewelry insurance cost?
- Do you need jewelry insurance?
- How to buy jewelry insurance
- Tips for protecting jewelry
- Frequently asked questions
Does homeowners insurance cover jewelry?
Homeowners insurance provides coverage for jewelry and watches if they are damaged by a type of loss covered by your policy, such as fire, theft or vandalism.
However, it might not be wise to rely solely on that coverage if you have expensive pieces or a large collection.
"Most of these insurance policies have specific limitations on certain listed items and jewelry is almost always included," says Scott Hammersand, a certified personal risk manager and licensed personal insurance advisor with Overmyer Hall Associates in Columbus, Ohio.
Hammersand says limitations often cap the dollar coverage per item or per occurrence. They also reduce the types of losses covered.
For example, standard policies typically limit liability for theft to $1,500. That's fine if your collection is mostly costume jewelry but it could be a problem if someone steals the $10,000 worth of pearls your great aunt left you in her will.
Supplementing your homeowners insurance with a floater policy, or purchasing a separate jewelry insurance policy, can help close the gaps in your coverage.
What is jewelry insurance?
Jewelry insurance is an insurance policy that covers you against losses if your jewelry is lost, stolen or damaged as the result of a scenario listed in your policy.
You can purchase jewelry insurance as a standalone policy or add it as a rider or floater to your existing homeowners coverage for an additional charge. Which one makes the most sense largely depends on how many pieces you want to insure and their value.
How does jewelry insurance work?
There are three options when it comes to insuring your jewelry:
Standard home insurance policy
Adding a floater or rider to your home insurance policy
Purchasing a standalone jewelry insurance policy
Here’s how each of those options works.
Comparing jewelry insurance options
|Homeowners insurance||Floater or rider on homeowners insurance||Standalone jewelry insurance|
|How it works||Covers personal belongings, including jewelry, for losses caused by problems listed in your policy||Adds coverage to your homeowners policy for jewelry; may be scheduled items or blanket coverage||Covers your jewelry independent of your homeowners or renters insurance policy|
|Coverage limits||Typically $1,500 for theft of jewelry, watches and precious and semiprecious stones||Varies||Varies|
|What it covers||Standard problems, including fire damage, theft and vandalism||May expand coverage to include accidental damages, mysterious disappearance or damage caused by pets and pest||Can cover loss, damages and theft, as well as travel, disappearances or stones that go missing|
What’s the difference between scheduled and blanket coverage?
When it comes to adding a floater or rider to your homeowners policy, your insurer might give you the option to schedule each item separately or purchase blanket coverage.
Here’s how the two differ.
Blanket coverage: You have just one rider that covers your entire jewelry collection up to a specified limit, with no additional deductible.
Individually scheduled coverage: You have a rider for each jewelry piece with coverage based on each specific item’s value.
"Think of it as an itemized list of things you want to cover," says Richard Vinhais, CEO of Wax Insurance, an insurance marketplace for jewelry, collectibles and luxury goods.
Scheduling pieces separately could make sense if you have a larger collection that includes items with a wide range of values. You might also prefer to list them separately if you have fewer pieces but all are of high value.
Note that if you opt for scheduling separately, your insurer might require an appraisal to determine the value of each piece.
What does jewelry insurance cover?
Jewelry insurance can insure against losses related to vandalism, theft or damage caused by problems covered by your homeowners insurance. Depending on the policy, certain types of losses (such as flood-related damage) may be excluded.
So what kinds of jewelry can you insure? The list can include any of the following:
Antique or heirloom jewelry, including necklaces, rings and brooches
Engagement rings and wedding bands
Tiaras or hair combs
Generally, you should be able to insure any type of jewelry as long as it can be appraised. Whether an appraisal is required for coverage or not depends on the type of policy you're getting.
Your homeowners insurance policy or jewelry insurance policy will generally cover your jewelry while you travel as well. So if you'd like to take your jewels along on vacation or a business trip, your coverage could go with you. Specialized jewelry insurance and floaters can cover damage and theft but also accidental loss and “mysterious disappearance".
What doesn’t jewelry insurance cover?
Exclusions to jewelry insurance coverage may include the below:
Damages caused by pets, children or pests
Wear and tear over time
However, if you buy a floater policy and “schedule” your valuables individually, you can get coverage for losses not covered by your homeowners insurance. This more expensive option offers broader protection for your valuables, including coverage for accidental losses. For example, if you drop your wedding ring in the garbage disposal and it gets mangled, that might be covered. Or if you notice a few stones have gone missing from your engagement ring that might be covered as well.
How much does jewelry insurance cost?
Jewelry insurance typically costs 1% to 2% of the insured jewelry's value. The more jewels you're insuring, the more you'll pay for coverage. You may also have to foot the bill yourself to get your jewelry professionally appraised.
If you're interested in getting coverage, it's a good idea to shop around to compare rates from different insurers. You can start by assessing the cost of adding a jewelry rider to your homeowners policy, then cast the net wider to include standalone policies.
Do you need jewelry insurance?
Whether or not you need jewelry insurance depends largely on what kind of jewelry you own.
"If you have particularly valuable or sentimental items, such as heirloom pieces, passed down through your family over generations, it may be worth investing in a separate jewelry insurance policy to ensure that you have adequate coverage if something were to happen," says Ty Wilson, co-founder and COO of CustomMade, a digital custom jewelry marketplace.
Reviewing your homeowners insurance policy is a good place to start. You can check the coverage limit and compare that amount against what you know to be the value of your jewelry.
If the standard coverage isn't enough, you might weigh the merits of adding floater coverage to your homeowners insurance or choosing a standalone jewelry insurance policy.
How to buy jewelry insurance
If you're interested in buying jewelry insurance, you can start with your current insurer. Talk to your homeowners insurance or renters insurance company to see what coverage you have and what your options are for adding on a rider or floater policy.
You can also search for standalone policies online if that's something you're interested in or think you need. When comparing riders or standalone coverage, it's helpful to ask the right questions.
What types of loss are covered and what is excluded from the policy?
How much coverage is available?
Is blanket or itemized coverage more appropriate?
How much will coverage cost?
Once you have jewelry insurance in place, it’s a good idea to review your policy annually. That way, you can ensure that your coverage still meets your needs if you've added pieces to your collection or sold other ones.
Tips for protecting jewelry
Here are a few tips for protecting your jewelry collection:
Take photos of each piece you own.
If you're keeping jewelry in your home, store it in a secure place such as a floor safe or wall safe and don't share the combination with anyone.
Consider keeping higher-value items in a safe deposit box at your bank.
Keep track of all receipts showing jewelry purchases and appraisal records for luxury items.
Use caution when posting photos of your jewels on social media, as doing so could make you a target for thieves.
Limit the number of pieces you carry when traveling and consider leaving the most expensive pieces at home.