There’s no place like Rome

Natasha Root, Private Client Executive at Scrutton Bland explains the importance of keeping up with your home and contents insurance.

05 August 2022 - Natasha Root

The Times recently ran a story about a valuation of The Colosseum in Rome. The world’s largest ancient amphitheatre is currently worth €77 billion, according to Deloitte*. Whilst very few buildings, and their contents are worth quite that much, it is certainly worth looking at your home and what you have inside it, to make sure they are insured at their current market value.

While most of your belongings will be covered by your home contents insurance, many insurers impose a single item limit, meaning that you if you own an individual item worth more than the ‘single item sum’ specified in the policy, you may not be able to claim for the full value of that item. So, for example, if your policy has a ‘single item sum’ limit of £5000 and you need to make a claim for a stolen painting worth £8000, the policy will only repay £5000, leaving you out of pocket by £3000.

For this reason, it is important that you obtain up to date valuations to make sure your jewellery and other items are fully protected in the event of a claim. Most standard policies have low single item limits, so it’s vital that you have an insurance policy that suits your needs.

At Scrutton Bland we pride ourselves in working with high value insurers who offer bespoke cover for insurance for valuable items like jewellery and antiques. Many of our clients have high value items in their possession, such as diamond earrings or a designer watch. If you have been given high value gifts over the years, or perhaps have inherited some antique heirlooms from a relative, then you should think carefully about the insurance implications for these pieces.

Points to remember (especially if you need to make a claim)

  • Make sure you have proof of ownership. Keep all receipts and evidence to show you are the legal owner, and take photographs showing the condition of the item when it was new, or when you inherited it;
  • Evidence of each item’s current value. This should be done by a UK jeweller or independent valuer with a full description of the item(s), signed and dated by them and needs to be less than 3 years old. The valuation should show the replacement value of the item at the time of the valuation.
  • How the item is stored. Ideally, jewellery and other high value possessions should be kept in a safe or strong box, or in a bank vault. Safe manufacturers should be AIS (Association of Insurance Surveyors) approved and be rated according to European Norm (EN) rating, and the safe should be installed according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.

If you are considering specialist insurance, whether it is for jewellery, watches, fine art, antiques or items such designer handbags, it is worth talking to a broker that specialises in covering such items as they will have experience in the high net worth market and in the event of a claim you have the peace of mind knowing that your claim will be settled satisfactorily.

At Scrutton Bland our Private Client Insurance department offers a bespoke service to cover your insurance needs. Furthermore we can work with our tax advisers to help manage and protect your wealth, assets and investment portfolio.

Contact Natasha at 01206 417184 or email

Scrutton Bland Insurance Brokers Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority

*The Times, World News, 27.07.22


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