Is Moving Insurance Actually Worth The Money?

Relocating can be a hassle, no matter the size or distance of the transition. Though, moving across greater distances increases the chances of your things winding up lost or destroyed. What actions can homeowners take to gain peace of mind when preparing for a big move? For starters, look into moving insurance policies.

Moving insurance is the coverage you receive from your moving company to compensate for your personal belongings in the chance they're damaged during the moving process. Typically, moving insurance covers damages to personal property during all phases of relocation, though individual policies differ across companies. Moving insurance certainly isn't a necessity, but all relocating parties should at least consider the investment, especially if you own belongings that are expensive or carry immense sentimental value. Let's break down the positive and negative impacts of obtaining moving insurance, so that you can determine if the extra coverage is right for you and your family.

The different moving insurance policies

For starters, insurance grants homeowners comfort in the sense that their belongings are covered to some extent in the case of a moving mishap. Traditionally, insurance plans cover damage to (or the loss of) household items, no matter the reason, including natural disasters. Though, specific details differ from policy to policy.

Moving insurance policies typically fall under one of three general categories, two of which moving companies are required by federal law to offer if the move involves travel via U.S. interstate. The first legally mandated policy, called released value coverage, charges customers based on weight — up to 60 cents per pound, to be exact. This coverage is free for customers, as it's paid by the moving company instead. This option may not be wisest for travelers with belongings that are valuable, but lightweight, since the policy won't come close to covering the items' full value.

The second option, full value protection, is also legally mandated for interstate travel and requires customers to pay much more upfront, since these policies will fully replace items that are damaged or lost, or completely cover the damaged items' fees for repair. There's also separate liability insurance, which will cover additional protection the consumer pays for, excluding the basic coverage already covered by movers. The details of this particular option can also vary depending on the policy you agree upon with your moving company.

The bottom line on moving insurance

Perhaps the most common and obvious downside to acquiring moving insurance is that it's another monetary cost to worry about. Moving, already a time-consuming and stressful endeavor, is also expensive. You may have purchased a home recently in the new city or state you're moving to, on top of putting money toward hiring a moving company and making other transitional changes. Why put even more money toward an insurance policy you may not even need to use? Whether moving insurance is worth the additional expense is entirely up to the moving party, since every situation is different.

Consider upgrading to a full value protection plan if you intend to travel with many expensive belongings, especially if your trip will cross state lines or take you from coast to coast. Even if your transition is relatively short, a basic moving policy could make a huge difference in case the unimaginable occurs. And moving insurance shouldn't only be considered when enlisting the help of a moving company. If you choose to conduct the move yourself, there are still routes you can take to protect your travel in the case of natural human error. Rental truck companies offer insurance policies of their own that can cover damage to the truck, the cargo it carries, and even the people inside. These policies also offer varying amounts of coverage, depending on how much the customer chooses to pay upfront.