Well, It's finally dawned on me how much I've invested in gear (Thanks, GAS).
The thought occurred to me how much i'd be screwed if one of my bags were stolen, and I'm beginning to think I should get some kind of insurance for my stuff...
Do any of you have Camera insurance? How expensive is it, and what does it cover? How do they value your equipment?
I'm afraid that a regular Joe insurance guy would never see the value in some very expensive film equipment because it's not "digital", and thus never properly compensated you if it were taken...
As a retired insurance guy, here is my opinion. Buy a personal or commercial inland marine policy to cover specific pieces of equipment. These can also occur as a floter policy and even as endorsements on some homeowners policies. Your insurance agent will know. Generally you will be buying a policy to replace with like kind and quality, which will look much like used equipment prices. Hmm, you equipment is already used, right? New isn't available. It should be very easy to determine what your gear is worth. It has relatively little to do with what you paid for it and more to do with what a piece of gear in similar condition would sell for in the open market. Generally with an inland marine policy you are getting "all risk" coverage world wide. As an endorsement or extention of coverage on your homeowners policy you are getting coveraeg against specific perils of loss, subject to the conditions on you policy. You can read that last part as less comprehensive coverage. My advice, figure out a realistic price for your gear, go atlk to your insurance agent and get you stuff insured. Cost? You might expect a premium of around $15-$20/$1000/year. That would probably be a good ball part number. There will probably be a minimum premium and if you don't have any other insurance with the company, thay probably won't want to sell you this policy. For your values a good starting point might be recently completed sales on ebay. The insurance guy isn't going to try to do you wrong you and he will expect the same from you. Get realistic values and have a conversation with an agent about insuring it. Bill Barber
"commerical inland marine policy" -- I know very little about insurance, so am curious to know what is particular about a "marine" policy that offers worldwide coverage? Sounds better than a rider on my homeowner's policy. Who a company like State Farm or USAA do marine policies, do you think?
My household insurance covers me for kit worth up to £1,000 when I take it out of the house. I rely on that and being careful.
get a floater policy added to your renter's/homeowners policy. Very low deductable (I had state farm at one time $100). You set the values, provide serial numbers. Take photos of all your gear and keep them someplace safe other than your dwelling.
Inland Marine is an insurance term which has nothing really to do with a boat, a lake, etc. I'm a retired State Farm agent. Laws and regulations vary from state to state. You will probably want the most comprehensive coverage available . . . which would be offered by an inland marine policy in which you have scheduled specific pieces of equipment. Typically when you just endorse to your homeowners, the deductibles will be pretty high and coverage will be more limited. If you drop your camera and break it it would probably be covered on the inland marine policy. As an endorsement on your homeowners the loss would probably not be covered. The difference between the two approaches is the inland marine doesn't have what I might call a "dummy exclusion." So if you do something stupid like sending it through the washing machine or run over it with your car, it is probably still covered, as long as you actions were not intentinal . . . you know like throwing a camera against the wall because you didn't like an image.
I know very little about insurance, but all I can tell you is when an old friend of mine had all of his Canon FD cameras and lenses stolen a couple of years ago and claimed from his insurance company, they only paid him a fraction of it's true value because it was "film equipment and obsolete", since I was insured with the same company I cancelled my policy, and if any of my gear is stolen I will replace it myself.
Insurance companys especially employ people to think of fifty good reasons why they aren't going to pay you out .
I'm no expert but some policies, including riders on homeowners insurance, allow you to set the value of the items up front. So you pay a premium based on those values and that's what you're covered for. Very useful when used values do not provide a valid comparison.
But keep in mind it can get tricky to insure a collection of items that is frequently changing.
I'd suggest using a specialist policy thats geared up for your equipment, try protect your bubble which are specialist gadget insurers
i agree 100% with bill b.
i have a commercial insurance account with an inland marine floater.
it isn't cheap but worth every penny. the floater allows the cameras to be insured
when they aren't in your home, office, studio ( wherever ).
you can establish the camera equipment's worth with your receipt, or by completed auctions on ebay.