Recent data shows that the most common province to province household move in all of Canada is from Alberta to British Columbia. B.C. also makes the podium as one of the country’s largest recipients of new residents. Then there is internal migration, where residents move amongst the local cities and towns while keeping within the comforting confines of the province. It all makes sense of course. After all, what’s not to love about beautiful British Columbia?
However, while a life transition can be an exciting one, the move itself can be both cumbersome and worrisome. Why the worry? Well, you’re packing up all of your valuable possessions, transporting them across hundreds of miles, and moving them into a new abode. A lot can happen in that process. Thankfully, as B.C.’s leading independent broker in homeowners’ insurance, Park Insurance is here to lend a hand as moving day approaches.
5 Item Insurance-Conscious Checklist for Your Household Move
1. Amend Your Homeowners Insurance Policy to Protect Your Possessions in Transit
The same study referenced above also notes that 80% of the population is not properly insuring their belongings while in transit. That shocking statistic should be the call to action that you need to move on, before you move.
Why the gaping hole in coverage? There is a misconception that securing insurance from your mover is the solution. In addition to being expensive, such policies may not cover the full value of your possessions and can also leave your household exposed to all sorts of liability concerns. For instance, if your homeowners’ insurance lapses and a third party is injured during the move, you may be liable for damages sustained. There is a far better option that you are likely not aware of.
Many people do not understand that they may be able to amend their existing homeowners’ insurance policy to account for the physical move. Most insurance providers permit the transference of your current policy to your new home. When this transfer occurs, your possessions remain insured while in transit. In the unfortunate event that a mover drops that 400 lb dining room hutch that your in-laws gifted you on your wedding day, your amended policy will cover the cost to replace it, unless it goes unreported (ahem).
It is important to note that you should make no assumption regarding your policy. Instead, contact an independent insurance broker to run an assessment of your current plan. They will check that you are covered for both damage to your possessions and from third party liability concerns. Contact Park Insurance to make sure that item #1 on your moving day checklist is complete.
2. Take a Full Inventory of Your Possessions
The value of your possessions is not arbitrary when it comes to adequate insurance coverage. You need to take a comprehensive inventory of everything before it is packed for transit. Even if you don’t know the date of your future move, start that inventory today. Leave the pen and paper pad in your drawer and instead download one of these recommended home inventory apps that are available for your mobile device and let the valuation begin.
3. File a Change-of-Address (for More Than Convenience)
Far too many people neglect to file a timely change of address with Canada Post. As soon as you know your new address, do so. If you don’t yet have one, forward your mail to a temporary PO Box or to the residence of a trusted friend or family member. There is more to consider than convenience here. If your mail is sent to an old address and/or becomes stuck in a “return to sender” queue, you are instantly exposed to the threat of identity theft and fraud.
In addition, double-check that you’ve changed your address with your bank, credit cards, and all corresponding eCommerce apps, sites, and online partners that you are connected to, including PayPal, eBay, Amazon and so forth. You don’t want anything inadvertently mailed or shipped to your old address. Prepare a checklist for this.
4. Update Information on All Other Insurance Policies
Remember to immediately update the address connected to all other insurance policies that you hold. This may include (where applicable) automobile insurance, boat/marine insurance, tenant insurance, mortgage insurance, travel medical, and even commercial insurance (in the event that you operate a business from home). You don’t want any gaps or inconsistencies for even the shortest period of time when it comes to your documented policies.
5. Secure Adequate Storage Coverage
Many people secure temporary, longterm, or permanent off-site storage when a move is on the horizon. While storage facilities may provide some coverage, you cannot be sure that it is enough to cover the full value of your stored possessions (i.e. antiques, etc.) and any liabilities that may be connected to said storage. You need to make sure that your stored possessions are covered for loss, damage and/or theft that can come from accidental handling, man-made threats, and/or natural hazards. Contact Park Insurance for comprehensive moving and storage coverage.