Should I Insure My Art?

To need insurance but not have it is a disaster in any situation. You wouldn't risk not having health insurance knowing that one even could ruin you, and you wouldn't put your home at risk simply because you don't think damages are likely. The same goes for your art. Whether you're an artist or a collector, you need to have your pieces insured in case of accidents. Knocking a sculpture off a stand or making a hole in a painting are already bad circumstances that don't need to be made worse by knowing you won't see a cent in reimbursement.

There is a common misconception among some collectors that any artworks stored in the home are covered under a homeowner's protection policy. Compare home insurance policy, and you'll see that this often isn't the case. Many policies make specific exemptions for artwork, or they limit coverage to the point that it isn't useful to have. Compare home insurance with iSelect to see if you can find an agreeable policy, but you may need to take out one specifically for fine arts.

Fine Art Insurance

Compared to other forms of insurance, fine art insurance is unique in a few ways. For instance, art pieces aren't like most items you would insure where they would be replaced with a different item of approximate value. Artworks are unique, and you'll generally want a damaged piece preserved in some way rather than replaced. Fine art policies are also more adaptable than most and can fit specific circumstances of each piece. The location the piece is displayed in as well as the nature of the owner (artist, collector, etc.) can both factor in deciding policies.

Insurance policies can be drawn to account for "all risks" since artwork can be exposed to a variety of threats and often won't reside in the same location for long. It's important to note that the natural decay of work generally doesn't count as a risk. Minor wear and tear during transit are some of the most common ways artwork is damaged, and fine art policies typically don't have large deductibles to meet before the insurer covers damages.

Buying a Policy

If you want a fine art insurance plan, you'll first need to gather all the documents that prove the piece belongs to you. These documents will generally include a title, provenance, bill of sale, as well as an appraisal and replacement estimate. It's also a good idea to include photographs of the work from many angles to preserve its condition when originally insured. Look into options for iPhone photo storage if you need to. The more evidence you have a piece's original condition, the better. That way, you are protected even in tough times. As an artist, having premium iPhone storage is critical to your career. Spare yourself the trouble of having to save on multiple sources and keep all your photo information in one place.

It's generally recommended to have your artwork appraised once a year for insurance purposes. This ensures your insurance company is kept up-to-date on the current market value of your pieces. This is important since the value of art often increases over time, and you want to make sure you get the most value in case of a loss.

Commercial and Liability Insurance

Of course, it's possible you don't just need insurance for yourself and your collection. If you're displaying many pieces in a location like a museum, you'll also need liability insurance to cover any accidents that may occur on-premises. For example, someone could slip and fall at a gallery, and you'll need to protect yourself in case of a lawsuit. You'll also need insurance in case you have other employees or contract workers on-premises who could be injured. It's also a good idea to have commercial insurance in case of things like building damages or if a valuable piece gets stolen.

You'll need to carefully consider your specific needs when looking for fine art insurance. Luckily, policies are flexible, and providers are used to working on personalized cases.

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