Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Ever thought of insuring your collection of stamps?

We all have heard of at least one person who falls into a category of collector. It can be assumed that most us have, at one time or another, collected a variety of things such as stamps, bubble gum stickers, Zippos or toy sets from breakfast cereal boxes. Then, after some time, we lose interest in what we used to thought of as collectible and boxes full of junk litter the attic floor.

But some of us turn out to be consistent and continue with their hobby for ever. There is, however, a certain type of collectors, who have taken this hobby to a higher level and have diversified their portfolios by investing in valuable coins or stamps.

So, who needs a special cover? Think about this: if you have standard homeowner insurance, it is probably good enough for your every day household needs But valuable collections are completely different story. In certain situations low value collections may be covered, but submitting a claim to the insurer is fraught with difficulties and can often be unsuccessful. The majority of homeowner policies will typically cover just the material cost and not its perceived value. Of course it is easy to claim for a broken TV set, but try claiming for a priceless rare Roman coin.

So, fellow collectors, what is the best approach to insurance if you collection is more valuable than your new car? Do you lie awake at night waiting for it to be stolen? Fortunately, an simple solution is at hand, with specialist insurance policies now available just for these kinds of collections. AIG and Allianz are but two of many insurance companies that have specialist policies for valuable collections.

Being a serious collector, it is most likely you will choose an 'all risk' policy which will insure your valuables against everything from fire to nuclear attack to 'mysterious disappearance' The strange phenomenon of 'mysterious disappearance' can be found in the cover that is provided by the Fireman's Fund policy. Transportation and traveling doesn't have to be a worry as both are covered in all specialist policies.

As it is natural for collections to increase in both size and value, policy writers account for this in the way their policies are written. You can simply phone your insurance provider to tell them them that you have invested in another item and this would be added to your policy immediately. If you are nervous about going to collect a new addition, then a quick phone call to your insurer prior to going and your new investment is insured.

Nothing can replace sentimental value in collection built up over many years.

Nevertheless, if you have adequate insurance cover, the financial impact of such a loss won't be nearly as bad as the emotional one. Unfortunately, you can't insure your emotions.

Photo source: Michael Wheeler

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