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Are your firearms/accessories insured correctly?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2009 at 14:30
Ick View Drop Down
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The standard homeowners policy language is designed for the average joe with one handgun or one hunting rifle.  If you are one of those guys with more of a collection than that.... this thread is for you.  The way I see it, you have 4 options.  They are listed below along with some other notes.
 
Option 1, let your standard homeowners policy cover the guns
Problems:
--Your base homewners policy only covers your guns for fire and other limited perils, PLUS there is generally a limit on "theft" of anywhere from $2,000 to $3,000 depending on your company.
--There may be problems collecting a fair value for collectible price, antique value, sentimental value, rarity value, etc.
--Most insurance companies have these limitations on guns AND accessories, not just guns.  So keep in mind that your $3,000 Zeiss scope may be INCLUDED in these limitations.
Advantage:
Already included in your premium so no cost.
Ick's notes:
If you have a lot of value this is a very poor way to protect your firearms and related equipment.

Option 2, purchase a higher theft amount on your homeowners
Problems:
--Your base homewners policy will STILL only cover your guns for fire and other limited perils, SUBJECT to a limit on "theft" based on what you purchased.
--There STILL will be problems collecting a fair value for collectible price, antique value, sentimental value, rarity value, etc.
--Accessories may also be included within this limitatoin, so don't forget to consider the value of accessories that could also be stolen or damaged in some way.
Advantage:
Simple and cheap.
Cost:
Generally nominal cost, A buddy of mine said said a $5,000 limit cost $5 a year on his State Farm policy.
Ick's notes:
If you have a lot of value this is a very poor way to protect your firearms and related equipment.


Option 3, purchase separate insurance from NRA "collector not shooter" program
Problems:
--The policy language that I have read from this program is limiting and possibly would result in no coverage for most guys guns, so read the fine print. It doesn't sound like a clean transaction to me. Sounds like you are paying for something and not getting much coverage.
Advantage:
--Can you insure the items for a true fair value a collectible price, antique value, sentimental value, rarity value, etc. under this program?  I would assume so, but check the fine print.
Cost:
--Cost is $6.70 per $1,000 of value which is good, but I have serious concerns about policy language though.
Ick's notes:
If you have a lot of value this is a very poor way to protect your firearms and related equipment especially when there is a very broad option available for only a few dollars more.

Option 4, purchase separate scheduled insurance from your homeowner program or the NRA's broader program.
Problems:
--You likely need to get some kind of written appraisal from a local gun broker. This is generally NOT a big deal.
Advantage:
--The coverage is very broad and covers all sorts of things like flood, dropping the firearm down a cliff, realizing 3 hours later you left it by a tree after field dressing an animal and it is not there when you return, etc.
--You CAN insure the items for a true fair value a collectible price, antique value, sentimental value, rarity value, etc. under this program.
Cost:
--Ick's homeowners in PA with local agent and Pennsylvania company is $11 per $1,000 of value, I have three other companies at about the same cost.
--NRA's program is $17.40 per $1,000 of value   Cha-CHING!
--A buddy of mine has State Farm in Texas with local agent at $17 to $22 per $1,000 of value (This is a VERY high price, not sure why State Farm is so high).
Ick's notes:
Most of my customers choose NOT to list every firearm and accessory they own. Generally they list the most expensive and valuable firearms, optics, lasers, etc. this way.
 
Ick's Other Notes
Caution: Some company people are LIBERAL ANTI-GUN so don't be surprised if you have follow-up questions about "Why does the insured have a howitzer?" Personally I have yet to have a company make a big deal out of anything my customers buy, but I have heard of someone having trouble at some point in the past. Case in point:
 

Keep in mind, I have found this ---^ to be the EXCEPTION, not the rule.
 
Firearms Book
You SHOULD keep a book on all your firearms including photos, invoices, serial numbers, NFA tax stamps, etc. in a SEPARATE location. It is also a good idea to keep any firearms history in here for things like "added new trigger" or history like "This weapon used in so-and-so conflict by my grandfather William Schmortz" or whatever.  Should there ever be another "assault weapons ban" you may need the documentation to show that some of your modifications, if any, were pre-ban.  For example, I took a pre-ban civilian AR15 with a pinned flash hider.... and had a gunsmith remove it and thread the barrel.  This is totally legal as of today to do (2008).  However, at some point in the future pinned flash hiders may be required on newly produced rifles.  I don't want someone giving me grief that I modified my weapon AFTER a ban goes into effect in 2010 or something.



 
OK, so I am a little anal about documentation. Fortunately there are some huge long-term benefits of that kind of record keeping.


Edited by Ick - March/30/2009 at 20:43
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2009 at 14:33
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IcK,
Thanks for the info. That is something you hardly ever think about doing but wish you did if something happens.
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2009 at 14:37
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Originally posted by Ick Ick wrote:

The standard homeowners policy language is designed for the average joe with one handgun or one hunting rifle.  If you are one of those guys with more of a collection than that.... this thread is for you.  The way I see it, you have 4 options.  They are listed below along with some other notes.
 
Option 1, let your standard homeowners policy cover the guns
Problems:
--Your base homewners policy only covers your guns for fire and other limited perils, PLUS there is generally a limit on "theft" of anywhere from $2,000 to $3,000 depending on your company.
--There may be problems collecting a fair value for collectible price, antique value, sentimental value, rarity value, etc.
--Most insurance companies have these limitations on guns AND accessories, not just guns.  So keep in mind that your $3,000 Zeiss scope may be INCLUDED in these limitations.
Advantage:
Already included in your premium so no cost.
Ick's notes:
If you have a lot of value this is a very poor way to protect your firearms and related equipment.

Option 2, purchase a higher theft amount on your homeowners
Problems:
--Your base homewners policy will STILL only cover your guns for fire and other limited perils, SUBJECT to a limit on "theft" based on what you purchased.
--There STILL will be problems collecting a fair value for collectible price, antique value, sentimental value, rarity value, etc.
--Accessories may also be included within this limitatoin, so don't forget to consider the value of accessories that could also be stolen or damaged in some way.
Advantage:
Simple and cheap.
Cost:
Generally nominal cost, A buddy of mine said said a $5,000 limit cost $5 a year on his State Farm policy.
Ick's notes:
If you have a lot of value this is a very poor way to protect your firearms and related equipment.


Option 3, purchase separate insurance from NRA "collector not shooter" program
Problems:
--The policy language that I have read from this program is limiting and possibly would result in no coverage for most guys guns, so read the fine print. It doesn't sound like a clean transaction to me. Sounds like you are paying for something and not getting much coverage.
Advantage:
--Can you insure the items for a true fair value a collectible price, antique value, sentimental value, rarity value, etc. under this program?  I would assume so, but check the fine print.
Cost:
--Cost is $6.70 per $1,000 of value which is good, but I have serious concerns about policy language though.
Ick's notes:
If you have a lot of value this is a very poor way to protect your firearms and related equipment especially when there is a very broad option available for only a few dollars more.

Option 4, purchase separate scheduled insurance from your homeowner program or the NRA's broader program.
Problems:
--You likely need to get some kind of written appraisal from a local gun broker. This is generally NOT a big deal.
Advantage:
--The coverage is very broad and covers all sorts of things like flood, dropping the firearm down a cliff, realizing 3 hours later you left it by a tree after field dressing an animal and it is not there when you return, etc.
--You CAN insure the items for a true fair value a collectible price, antique value, sentimental value, rarity value, etc. under this program.
Cost:
--Ick's homeowners in PA with local agent and Pennsylvania company is $11 per $1,000 of value, I have three other companies at about the same cost.
--NRA's program is $17.40 per $1,000 of value   Cha-CHING!
--A buddy of mine has State Farm in Texas with local agent at $17 to $22 per $1,000 of value (This is a VERY high price, not sure why State Farm is so high).
Ick's notes:
Most of my customers choose NOT to list every firearm and accessory they own. Generally they list the most expensive and valuable firearms, optics, lasers, etc. this way.
 
Ick's Other Notes
Caution: Some company people are LIBERAL ANTI-GUN so don't be surprised if you have follow-up questions about "Why does the insured have a howitzer?" Personally I have yet to have a company make a big deal out of anything my customers buy, but I have heard of someone having trouble at some point in the past. Case in point:
 

Keep in mind, I have found this ---^ to be the EXCEPTION, not the rule.

You SHOULD keep a book on all your firearms including photos, invoices, serial numbers, NFA tax stamps, etc. in a SEPARATE location. It is also a good idea to keep any firearms history in here for things like "added new trigger" or history like "This weapon used in so-and-so conflict by my grandfather William Schmortz" or whatever.



 
OK, so I am a little anal about documentation. Fortunately there are some huge long-term benefits of that kind of record keeping.

[Ick sits back and waits for the huge KUDOS rewards]
SO, you're an INSURANCE guy???????????????????
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2009 at 14:38
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ICK, Ed's BOY

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Thanks man.  One thing I can see coming as an insurance guy...... should the laws change and the value of your collection suddenly receives "Pre-ban" status.... the value of what you have could be a LOT different.  Might be good to take a look at things now so you have more of a perspective on what you have to lose if something happens.
 
Additionally, documentation ALSO helps as evidence for "pre-ban" status on certain items and modification dates.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2009 at 15:50
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I just got a quote from state farm last week. Basic renter insurance pulse and extra 10 grand for a rider put the total for a year @ 333.oo a year. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2009 at 17:08
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My homeowners policy covers $2600 total,Bugger!!!
Thanks for the info and ideas.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/12/2009 at 20:50
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Try an independent agent for CNA.  It is pricey but not near the quote you have. If you get a large policy it is much more cost efficient. It really drops after 50 K. Actually cheaper than $10,000 coverage. Over coverage is cheaper than under coverage. The brand of safe is a big reduction. Just a steel box does not count for much. Get 1 hr fire protection or more. Also the type of monitoring on your alarm system. Cell and or Satellite backup besides just land line reporting. It saves a lot on the insurance.  Make sure your agent knows about these things. Don't just say I have a safe. or I have a alarm. Brand and fire rating is needed on the safe. The value of the safe has to be covered also. Protect your investments.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/13/2009 at 00:32
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Can you get insurance against confiscation by the government?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/13/2009 at 10:07
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ICK, Ed's BOY

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Originally posted by 3_tens 3_tens wrote:

Try an independent agent for CNA.
 
Dude, you better look into that again.  CNA is out of business.  They sold their personal lines customers to Allstate.  All the original CNA policyholders are now with a subsidiary of Allstate named "Encompass".
 
I don't quesiton the integrity or claim paying ability of Encompass... but the last time I checked their program out in Pennsylvania their base rates on homeowners policies were absolutely HORRIBLE.  They had a great rate on Jewelry, musical instruments, cameras, guns, and other scheduled items.... but the homeowners rate factors were so costly it always made sense to write my customers elsewehre.
 
UNFORTUNATELY, a lot of agents have no idea how coverage works.  I had a competitor quote the "increased theft limit" cost to someone when they wanted the scheduled coverage on a rare collectible firearm.  Watch out that your agent is sharp enough to know the difference.
 
From:
 

Encompass Insurance is the marketing name for a division of Allstate Insurance Company that focuses exclusively on the sale of personal property-casualty insurance products by independent agents. These insurance products are currently written by underwriting companies owned by affiliates (listed below) of Allstate. All of the listed companies are rated B+ (Very Good), A- (Excellent), A (Excellent) or A+ (Superior) for insurance financial strength by the A.M. Best Company as of January 29, 2008.1



Edited by Ick - January/13/2009 at 10:11
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