Musical Instruments can be some of the most important possessions we have. Like pigment for a painter, a ball in many sports, or design tools for an architect, musical instruments provide a vehicle for our creativity. The difference is that instruments are works of art on their own. Many of the best are made decades or even centuries ago and carry significant value to their owners.
So what happens if they’re damaged, stolen, or lost? If you don’t have insurance the answer is obvious, you’ve not only lost your beloved musical companion but you’ve lost your investment.
But what if you do have insurance? Well, here are some pitfalls and definitions that’ll make sure your coverage is exactly what you expected.
Many people feel their instruments are covered by a homeowner’s policy. Well, you’re right, kind of. A homeowner’s policy has a lot of holes in coverage. The biggest is that you only have coverage in your home. If you use your instruments professionally there isn’t coverage. If there’s a flood, your instrument isn’t covered. In fact, a lot of things may be excluded in your homeowner’s policy. Finally, you’re deductible applies which is usually $1000 or more. So if you’re counting on coverage in your homeowners policy make sure an insurance agent talks through it with you and verifies that you have the coverage you need.
Specialized Musical Instrument Coverage
If you’re one of the millions of people who use your valuable instruments for public performance, it’s important to find coverage created for what you do. Here are some basics you need to make sure you understand about your policy:
- Worldwide Coverage – some policies limit where coverage extends to. The best cover worldwide.
- Agreed Value – Like fine art and vintage cars you can’t just go out and replace your valuable instruments. So make sure you have a policy set up to pay you the Agree Value if the instrument is completely destroyed.
- Deductible – The dollars you pay out of pocket when a claim happens is called a deductible. Musical instruments can have as low as a $0 deductible but you’ll have to pay more for it. The best plan is to carry a $250 deductible and pay less in annual premium.
- Knowledge of Instruments – You want a company that specializes in musical instruments. This means when you have to fix a damaged instrument everyone is talking the same language.
- “All Risk” Coverage – Find a company that offers coverage with this language. Musical Instrument should have coverage for floods, breakage, earthquakes, etc. These things are often excluded.
- Diminished Value Coverage – If your instrument is damaged its value when fixed will be less than before it was broken. The best companies write you a check for the difference.
- Other Options – There are many more features to a great instrument policy. Two examples are coverage during shipping and rental reimbursement.