By Lorie Ham
Many of us have picked up new hobbies during the pandemic or had extra free time to spend on the hobbies we already had. Whether your hobby involves cycling, collectibles like sports cards or anime figures, or even collecting expensive board games, if something bad happens, is that hobby covered by your homeowners insurance? Will you be able to replace those precious items?
So, let’s say your hobby includes collecting something. “A gap in coverage on your homeowners policy can occur when you own a lot of items that have policy sublimits,” states Mennonite Insurance/Mennonite Aid Plan Chief Executive Officer Jerry Linscheid.
You might ask, what is a sublimit? According to the International Risk Management Institute website, a sublimit is a limitation in an insurance policy on the amount of coverage available to cover a specific type of loss. A sublimit is part of, rather than in addition to, the limit that would otherwise apply to the loss. In other words, it places a maximum on the amount available to pay that type of loss, rather than providing additional coverage for that type of loss.
“For example, most homeowners policies have coverage limits for cash, jewelry, trailers, firearms, etc.,” continues Linscheid. “These sublimits range from $200-$2,500 depending on the category and the policy. Most companies will allow you to buy extra coverage if you own items in those categories. The best thing to do is check with your insurance agent. If you have invested thousands of dollars in a hobby, you want to be comfortable that you could replace most of those items should they be destroyed or stolen.”
Sublimits can also be raised as needed. “If you do ask to raise the limits on a category of property, expect your insurance company to ask for some details about what you own. They may want pictures or receipts for those items. For example, we recently had a customer ask to increase the limit on bicycles from the standard $2,500 to $7,500. The agent required photos of the bicycles to verify that the increase was warranted. The cost to increase coverage will vary by company and category of property.”
So, if you have acquired a new hobby or more personal property, or gotten really serious about biking, the best thing would be to contact your insurance agent to make sure you have the coverage you need for whatever hobby or collection you might have. Mennonite Insurance/Mennonite Aid Plan is happy to chat with you any time. Call us (559) 638-2327, email us [email protected], or visit our Facebook Page and we will be happy to help.