Most home insurance policies offer limited coverage for items in storage units. Learn more about how to protect your personal property.
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The typical homeowners insurance policy offers limited coverage for personal items housed in a storage unit. Worldwide personal property coverage is limited to 10% of your total contents coverage. Homeowners insurance may be limited to theft-only coverage. If this isn’t sufficient, consider purchasing coverage from your storage facility. Check your homeowners insurance policy to confirm the extent of your storage unit coverage.
Let’s explore the ins and outs of storage and homeowners coverage, along with some additional tips.
There are three primary considerations regarding homeowners insurance and storage units: off-premises coverage limits, perils covered by the policy, and sub-limits on high-value items.
Personal property is covered worldwide by homeowners insurance — but this comes with some caveats. Personal property coverage outside of the insured residence usually comes to 10% of total content coverage. For example, with $125,000 of personal property coverage, insurance for personal property outside of your home would max out at $12,500 — minus your deductible.
A possible workaround for this is to raise your coverage limit, increasing the limit of your 10% off-site coverage and increasing your home insurance premium. Another solution is to buy the coverage offered by your storage facility.
Confirm whether your coverage is limited to theft-only when the incident occurs outside of the insured property. If this limitation applies to your policy, consider purchasing extra coverage offered by your storage facility. Otherwise, any damage that occurs in transit or via flood, animals, or mold will not be covered.
Keep in mind potential payout limits on high-value items. Below are some common limitations for items such as coins, furs, jewelry, or watches.
|$200||Money, coins, gold|
|$1,500||Jewelry, watches, furs||Theft only|
|$1,500||Watercraft, trailers||Theft only|
Insurance companies often cap coverage on the above items unless you add — and pay for — an endorsement. If you plan on storing high-value items in a self-storage unit, consult your insurance company. High-value items generally aren’t covered by storage-unit insurance because of the risk. If you’re storing these types of items, consider adding an endorsement via your home insurance policy.
Storage unit insurance is a good idea if gaps exist in your personal property coverage. The three primary considerations for storage unit insurance are coverage levels, the types damage you’re covered against, and limitations for high-value items. Below are helpful tips worth considering when deciding whether to purchase additional storage coverage.
Review your storage unit insurance policy information to see what is covered. Some insurance policies will limit your off-residence coverage to theft only. Meaning, if your storage unit burns, floods, or is impacted by something other than theft, you would not retain coverage.
Look for a storage facility that covers:
Before purchasing additional insurance coverage, compare your storage and homeowners for vulnerabilities. If your contents will be placed at risk, consider an additional storage policy.
If you’re only allotted 10% of your total personal property amount, consider whether it will sufficiently insure the belongings you're storing. If it’s not enough, consider buying storage insurance to make up the difference.
Check the policy details of your storage coverage. Some storage companies will exclude coverage to high-value items such as cash, deeds, money, jewelry, watches, furs, and other valuable items. For these items, consider adding an additional endorsement to your homeowners policy or not storing anything of exorbitant value in your self-storage unit.
Best practices for your self-storage unit:
The Zebra is not an insurance company. We publish data-backed, expert-reviewed resources to help consumers make more informed insurance decisions.