Covering Personal Property in Storage and During Moving

Got a storage unit? In the process of moving? You may wonder about the coverage for these items. And while most home and renters’ insurance policies likely include some coverage for these items, you may be surprised to learn what isn’t covered.

Property in Storage Units

If you have personal property you keep in a storage unit, there is likely some coverage available if these items have a loss due to theft, weather, or vandalism. But it may not be as much as you think. There is typically a limit in your policy for them, and it may be as low as 10% of your personal property coverage. If you have a $50,000 personal property limit, will $5,000 cover what you have in storage? Maybe it will and maybe it won’t, that all depends on the value of what you are storing.

In addition, you should note there are exclusions to covering what is in storage. Damages from flooding, mold & mildew, vermin, earthquakes and more are unlikely to be covered. In addition, vehicles are not often covered, and things like firearms and collections may need to be confirmed as being covered under your property policy.

What if I Want More Coverage?

Often, storage units themselves may offer you a coverage option. Review the terms of these policies carefully and make sure you understand their limits and exclusions. You may also be able to get more coverage on your personal property, either by raising limits, scheduling the property, and/or adding a “floater” to the policy. However, this could result in higher premiums and isn’t always an option.

Property Being Moved

If you’re moving, you may assume that your property is still covered by home or renters’ insurance. And it may be, but these is a very important distinction to be aware of here. Most property policies will not pay for any damage done to personal property while being handled by professional movers—when packing or even physically moving the items.

You’ll need to understand what coverage the movers themselves have and what they offer. Be careful with any “waivers” or other articles releasing responsibility for damages. Don’t sign these unless you full understand what you’re giving up in coverage.

Moving to another state? There is a Federal law that moving companies must offer you the option of minimum liability or full valuation per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. So, make sure you understand what is and isn’t covered as you move or store personal property. If you have high-value items in either scenario, it is best to discuss the coverage for these before you move or store them. Talk with our agents about your limits and exclusions to better understand what may pr may not be covered for you.