Written by: Kate Becker

Are you getting ready to move to a new home? Fantastic! But while this is truly a great transition; you also need to take it seriously. There aren’t many situations that your household can go through, that are more chaotic than a relocation. No matter how careful you are – there’s a high chance that someone will damage or break some of your items. And sure; we know you’ll choose your moving company carefully. But at the end of the day, you may still want to think about looking into a policy regarding moving insurance.

Why do people have insurance?

Before we get into the intricacies of moving insurance, the question is – what is insurance in general? And why is it so important? Well, think about it for a second; as they get older, what is it that people want in life, at an increasing rate? That’s right – safety and security. And that’s precisely the reason insurance policies exist; to minimize financial risks for people, in all kinds of situations.

A man driving a car during dusk, as an example of having moving insurance.

If you’re buying a home, or a car – having the proper insurance policies is definitely the way to go!

Sure, planning for the worst outcome seems dark in any context; but most adults realize that it’s necessary. If something happens to your property, or you and your family; you want to at least have some financial security while you deal with this. And the relocation of your home is no different! While you’re going through your move, you want to be certain that nothing bad will happen to your property; or, in the very least, that all of the lost value won’t come out of your pocket. And that’s especially true if you’re dealing with some pretty valuable property, like when you transport a piano across the country; in that case, moving insurance is something to think about for sure.

Check your home insurance first

As you can see – finding good moving insurance is definitely one of the things to know before moving. But before you go any further in your search for financial security during a move; know that you might already have insurance for your relocation. Or, to be more specific – there may be a part of it in your existing insurance.

Do you have a home insurance policy? There’s a big chance you have a clause somewhere in there that deals with a potential relocation. It’s only the matter of going through your home insurance thoroughly, and checking everything out. And if there’s nothing there currently; there’s still a way your home insurance company can help you out. Many of these companies have offers related to relocations, for their home insurance clients. So before you do anything else – contacting your insurance firm is a really good idea. You may have the solution you’re looking for right in front of you; or you may have had it all along.

Separate moving insurance options

Okay, so you haven’t got a clause regarding moving in your home insurance policy. That’s still nothing terrible; there are plenty of other moving insurance options out there for you. Speaking of which – it’s time to take a look at this more closely, and answer one simple question; what does having moving insurance mean for you, exactly? Well, this sort of insurance policy is there to minimize the lost value of your things, if they sustain any damage in transit. Naturally, you immediately ask yourself; how do insurance providers know how much everything damaged was worth? In what way do they determine this – does that mean you have to keep receipts for all of the things you are relocating?

How is the value determined?

Don’t worry, you don’t – but while a relief, that isn’t as good as you think it is. Why? Well, because of the way moving insurance works; because of its structure. Bear in mind, this largely depends on your specific circumstances and location. But, let’s say you’re hiring some of the best long distance movers Pennsylvania has, and you need insurance for your items. If you were moving one kind of item, this would be a fairly simple situation; the movers would just determine the value of one, and multiply it by the quantity.

A white smartphone with a broken screen on a red surface.

Judging value by weight isn’t good for you when it comes to small, but really expensive items!

But let’s be realistic – when you relocate a household, you’re really moving all kinds of items, with wildly different values. Just determining their value individually would take ages in man-hours, and make moving insurance insanely expensive. Which is why companies use a simpler, even if not always the fairest method – determining value by weight. So, with this in mind – what are the different kinds of insurance you can have? Well, there are three most common policies.

Basic moving insurance policies

As we’ve mentioned above, there are many variations. But it doesn’t matter if you’re hiring some of the cross country moving companies Pennsylvania has or moving to Texas; in essence, these are the basic types of moving insurance:

A puzzle with an image of a hundred dollar bill, on a wooden surface.

You have to puzzle together how much you’re willing to spend on moving insurance!

  • Third-party policies: When you’re relocating, there’s nothing that says you have to buy insurance directly from your moving company. If for some reason, you want to look for moving insurance somewhere else, you can. But bear in mind – this usually means decreased liability for your movers, which means they won’t be as careful.
  • Released value: Here we’ve got the most common kind of insurance you can have while relocating. Why? Well, because it costs you nothing in addition to your moving plan. But, naturally – it’s the lowest amount of liability for your moving company. Usually, with this plan, they’re liable to recuperate you for just 60 cents per pound of weight. Which is okay for things of lesser value – but imagine an expensive and very lightweight phone breaking in transit!
  • Full value: Lastly, we’ve got the most costly option for you – but also the safest. With this moving insurance, your movers have to refund you for anything that they break or damage. Although, many moving companies have insurance policies that reduce their liability for extremely valuable items, even with a full value policy.