“Don’t assume that you are covered either by your own homeowner’s insurance or by the storage facility as part of the contract.’
Secure Self Storage – Hummels Wharf, PA: When storing your excess items you will want to buy insurance for the contents of your unit. If it’s simply excess furniture and household items that aren’t precious or sentimental and can be replaced, it might not be important. If you will need the items in the near future and wouldn’t be able to replace them the small cost of basic insurance might be well worth paying.
If you store sentimental items there is, of course, no amount of money that can replace them. An insurance policy for those items might just help you to start a new family heirloom collection if your items were stolen or lost in a fire or other disaster.
Don’t assume that you are covered either by your own homeowner’s insurance or by the storage facility as part of the contract. The insurance in both cases is almost always separate. Checking with your homeowner’s policy to see if you have a provision for that or if you can buy a rider to add on would be a good idea.
If not, or if you want to purchase insurance from your self storage facility, ask the manager of the facility about their offerings. Some storage businesses won’t rent to you unless you are covered by your own insurance and can prove it or if you buy their insurance.
While you are preparing your items for storage and before you pack them up, begin a list. Everything you place in storage should be listed and the value stated so you can buy insurance from the storage facility if necessary. It’s easier to do this before you pack everything up and have to go through it again after the fact to make your list of items. The inventory list will be necessary, too, if you have to make a claim to your insurance carrier if you experience a loss.
One way to do this is to take a photo of each box’s contents and of the larger or more valuable items. It’s an additional documentation to use in case of an incident. If you don’t have time to list everything when you are packing, take a clear picture and create the list later. The better and more detailed the list, the easier it will be to claim a loss, though, so do the best job you can of creating the inventory. Many self storage facilities don’t require insurance, but for your own protection it’s a good idea.