Fine Art Moving
Commercial Moving Insurance in Maryland & Virginia
Commercial moving insurance is something most people take for granted. It is natural to expect that if you pay a company to pack, load, haul, then unload your goods, and that the explicit understanding is that they will handle your goods with the utmost care, then they are liable for any damages or losses that occur on their watch. Regulations by which moving companies abide do in fact require companies to provide some insurance coverage at no extra cost. However, the payouts stipulated in mandatory basic liability insurance are really quite low, especially if you plan to move expensive belongings.
Basic liability coverage is based on the weight of your individual belongings. If a moving company damages or loses an item, you get about $.30 cents per pound of the items weight, or about $.60 for long distance hauls. If you’re moving ordinary furniture; stuff without real value, this isn’t too much of an issue, but if your shipment includes things like high end electronics, designer clothes or precious antiques. You could end up with huge losses and no way to get paid for them.
For maximum protection, you will want Replacement value coverage. Federal law dictates that moving companies are not allowed to sell insurance, so additional coverage must be obtained from a third party. The good news is these companies are not hard to find, and they have a range of different products to suit your needs as well as your budget.
Replacement value coverage means that you will be compensated not according to the actual value of your item, but according to how much it will cost to replace your item with a comparable brand new one. For example: Your TV cost $1,000 when you bought it 5 years ago, but now were you to sell your TV you’d probably get less than $500 for it; however, a comparable brand new TV goes for $1,300. The replacement value of your TV is thus $1,300.
You can opt to declare the value of each individual item you move, you may also opt to declare a single lump sum value for all your low value items, and individually declare only items with a replacement value higher than $500. Just remember, replacement value is the cost to replace an item with a brand new one, not the current value of the item.
If full coverage is a bit pricey and you find it excessive as may be the case with shorter moves, you may want to opt for named perils coverage instead. This provides the same compensation; however, you will need to individually name the conditions or perils which you want protection from. In the event that the cause of loss or damage was not included in your list of named perils, you get nothing.
For those who prefer to pack and load themselves, there is also Mobile storage coverage: it covers your shipment only in transit or storage, but not when you are loading and unloading. Truck rental insurance is similar, and is for people who opt to drive the truck themselves, it is important to note that truck rental insurance does not cover the truck or its passengers.
Finally there is Total Loss Only coverage; TLO insurance provides a lump sum in the event that your whole shipment is lost. This is a cost effective option for shipping low value items over long distances.
Take your time when choosing a company and a policy that you are comfortable with. There are a lot of choices out there, and matters like this should not be taken lightly. In the end, just remember that picking the right insurance package could literally be the difference between moving it or losing it.
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