Moving insurance: how it works?

In every possible way moving your belongings long-distance would take you getting moving insurance that may cover the accidental loss or damage during the transportation. However, the misconception about moving insurance and its coverage may leave you dissatisfied with the mover. To avoid that, Best Miami Mover’s experts would like to clear out the essence of moving insurance and its specific features so you won’t get slick while signing a contract.

Moving insurance: how it works?

What is moving insurance?

In general, a moving insurance policy determines terms, conditions, and the amount of reimbursement that could be allocated to you to cover damage that might have appeared during the moving operations. So basically, an insurance policy can provide you backup funds to compensate for the cost of the accidentally destroyed item or its repair. 

The insurance limits are usually set by the companies according to their capability to fully or partially reimburse an initial cost. So customers are free to involve a third-party insurer to enhance insurance coverage.

What are the options for valuation when you insure your move?

In itself, valuation is the sum that would be reimbursed by the moving company according to the liability it takes for transporting your belongings. It is important to understand that moving valuation coverage depends on what amount of liability the mover is willing to take on in case there would be any unintentional damage caused to your delivery. Depending on number of items you’re planning to move, the specifics of their packing and transportation, also their present condition and mileage that should be covered during the move, the valuation might be estimated differently.

There are 3 different options for moving insurance coverage: released value protection,  full-value protection, and purchase of third-party moving insurance.

Released Value Protection (RVP)

What is basic value protection during relocation?

This type of valuation coverage implies basic protection and usually is estimated at around $0.3 – 0.6 per pound. This is a basic bid for both intrastate and interstate moves. The good thing about RVP is that it is already included in the moving quote and you won’t be additionally charged for its cost. Though, you should check if it’s broken down from the rest of the expense items in the contract or bill of landing when signing them off.

The downside of this sort of mover’s insurance is that it is obviously ineffective since it won’t cover the cost of broken items at their market value. For instance, if movers would damage your flat-screen TV 50” that weighs about 25 pounds and originally costs $340 – 380 you’ll get only $16. Therefore, it would be much more practical to consider full-value protection instead.

Full-Value Protection

Full-value protection moving insurance companies

Regardless of the extra cost of it, the advantages of Full-Value Protection (FVP) are indisputable. Unlike the released value protection, FVP is based on your own valuation that you acclaim for each item. As for the actual cost of full-value protection moving insurance, it is usually set as 1-2% of the evaluated cost of your possessions.

The good news is that you receive coverage that is comparable to the market price of the item if it would be damaged. Not so inspiring thing about FVP is that it requires you to enlist each possession that costs above 100$ per pound in shipping documents which could be quite a challenge if there’s a huge amount to move.

The moving company would probably offer you 3 options for reimbursement in case of breakage:

  • Replace the item with the one with the same cost;
  • Repair it;
  • Cash settlement equal to the current market value of the broken item.

It’s a common practice when the customer and mover prearrange the way the insurance coverage will be provided. So that you need to contemplate what option will be the most favorable for you.

Few essential points to consider:

  1. Make sure that the estimator has documented any kind of pre-existing damage during his assessment. You must check and approve his notes before going to the assignment of the quote estimate.
  2. According to the policy of a federal agency named Surface Transportation Broad all items of extraordinary value and those that exceed $100 in value must be listed by customers and included in the bill of lading. Otherwise, moving companies cannot be claimed to reimburse their full value and may cover only $100 per pound.
  3. You may also ask if the carrier provides expanded or assessed value protection. The first type of coverage is mostly the same as RVP, but instead of a standard rate, you may declare your own. It is a convenient way for you to provide appropriate coverage for items that are valuable to you but have a little actual cash value: used clothing, or cherished heirlooms.

The assessed value (also known as lump sum value) in its turn is a set sum that you declare for each piece of shipment. This type of valuation is rather effective for transporting lots of light-weighted but costly items.

What doesn’t the moving company’s valuation cover?

According to their policy relocation companies take obligations for covering only damage caused by the improper handling while loading/unloading and during the trucking. However, there are several situations when the RVP and FVP cannot be claimed:

What isn't covered by moving company insurance?
  1. If you packed the belongings yourself instead of hiring professional packers.
  2. Any item of excessive value that wasn’t declared and put down into the inventory list.
  3. Substances and items unallowed for shipping that you’ve packed without notifying the mover.
  4. Anything broke during the transportation that you haven’t reported as damaged immediately after the move.
  5. Force majeure accidents like natural disasters and crimes (arson, robberies, vandalism).

That’s why you have to take the matters into your own hands and inquire the managers about the procedure of claim application and conditions that would be legally grounded for it.

How much does moving company insurance cost?

The rates per pound for the released value protection fluctuate between $0.3 – 0.6 per pound. In its turn, full-value protection moving insurance costs about 1% of the overall declared value but typically no more than $6 per pound. With that in mind, we may calculate the total sum:

Type of propertyAverage Move WeightValue of belongingsFVP purchase cost
One-bedroom apartment2,500 lbs$12,000$120
Two-bedroom apartment5,000 lbs$30,000$300
Three-bedroom apartment7,500 lbs$42,000$420

Third-party moving insurance option

What offers third-party moving insurance companies provide?

As you might have already guessed, it isn’t that great an idea to protect particular things with an extraordinary value with FVP. Some rarities, antiques, jewelry, and pieces of art are at times hard to evaluate or too much liability for a moving company. 

This is when you can apply for a third-party company to insure your assets. Relocation policies of authorized insurers are much like the lump sum and declare value coverage options, but the number of cases when the coverage might be retrieved is excessively larger. Those could be road accidents, theft, fires, natural cataclysms, etc.

Moreover, third-party insurers offer a variety of coverage options. You can order:

Limited insurance coverage. It is a type of contract that implies coverage for a particular kind of damage. It’s worth mentioning that this type of insurance encompasses insured events that occur during transportation or storage. Any damage caused during loading operations won’t be covered.

  • Select inventory coverage. An insurance policy protecting specialized items during the move. The selection of items that fall under coverage needs to be enlisted and given an assigned value on the inventory list.
  • The item for item coverage. A great option to insure the heavy loads for it is based on a rate per weight. This one is recommended mostly for commercial relocations when you have plenty of similar items with the comparable cost that you have to move altogether.
  • Full Replacement Value. The insurance policy that covers the total loss of your belongings due to uncontrolled accidents. This type of insurance doesn’t compensate for the destruction of a particular item, it gives you only the full coverage for the loss of the entire load.

As for motorcycle shipping and transportation of any motor vehicle, your property will likely be covered with commercial cargo insurance that is provided by the transport company. This type of policy covers the damage caused while in transit or because of theft. But if you want to cover the additional risks, we advise you to contact the motorcycle insurance company you’re served in.

Does homeowners’ insurance cover moving damage?

Usually, renter’s or homeowner’s policies do include the coverage for damage to the household items while being transported. Although, the actual application of it will depend on the terms and limits pursuant to your contract. Generally, the loss or breakage of personal home property during its transportation is covered for 20% to 50% of your home’s structure insurance. Supposedly, you have a lot of high-value assets to move like jewelry, original artwork, and antiques. On such occasions, it is better to get them insured with the assessed value protection and get them added to a separate insurance rider.

How to file a moving insurance claim

Filing a claim against the moving company

Whether you have delivered your household goods all shattered or with traces of obvious structural damage, you should know how to substantiate further claims for reimbursement. Here are the tips for you to follow:

  1. Always take snapshots of your belongings before the move. Those would be of great use to you when it comes to filing a claim. With the photos before and after delivery, you’ll get solid proof that the item was damaged during the ride. And conversely, you can document the pre-existed damage and won’t confuse it with the newly appeared.
  2. Always inform the moving company about articles of outstanding value. Like we’ve said movers won’t cover the damage caused to individual property which costs exceeds $100 per pound. Make sure these belongings are listed separately on a form titled “Declaration of Article of Extraordinary Value” and the assessed value is put down correctly.
  3. Revise the inventory sheet filled by the mover. Moving specialists often use shorthand marks to speed up the inventory process. Don’t hesitate to pore over their writings to check whether everything is correct and legible to you. By asking for a proper explanation of any unclear lines you’ll ensure there won’t be any troubles in case you’ll address the claim.
  4. Review your contract with the moving company before signing up. However precise and trustworthy you consider your moving contractor, you must thoroughly revise the insurance terms you’re agreeing to. Feel free to inquire moving manager about the details you deem unclear or incorrect.
  5. Don’t take long to report loss or damage. You must file the insurance claim within the nine months following the delivery date.
  6. Check the state regulations regarding moving insurance. There could be local specifics in regulations related to moving insurance coverage for each state. We advise you to contact the State moving association of the place that you’re heading to for more details.

Also, remember to inform the moving company that you’re about to file the claim. Its representatives are certainly the best advisor and they would gladly guide you in this process.

The Miami Movers – licensed and insured moving contractor

Our relocation company manages both intrastate and interstate moves in Florida promptly and inexpensively. Along with the well-laid-out packing and loading process, we offer our clients insured residential moving and storage. If you wish to carry out home relocation with full-value protection our moving managers can easily evaluate your possessions and provide an easy-to-comprehend moving insurance contract.