(Topic ID: 38418)

Let's talk Insurance.


By RussMyers

6 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 45 posts
  • 28 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 6 years ago by ovfdfireman
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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    #1 6 years ago

    OK, I'd like to have a chat about insurance, specifically about how people insure their pins against loss or damage.

    1. What is the company you use?

    2. Exactly what kind and amount of coverage do you have?

    3. Have you actually talked to your insurance agent about your pins specifically, to find out how they classify them, and how they insure them?

    4. Has anyone actually had to make a claim against their insurance for loss or damage of their pins and what was the result?

    I ask these things because I am in PA, and have had State Farm insurance for years.

    After a long and in-depth discussion with my agent, he indicated that in the event of loss or damage to my pins they would NOT be covered by State Farm under my Homeowner's policy.

    The reasoning was that the buying, fixing up, and sometimes selling or trading of my pinball machines, even though they are my personal possessions and NOT a business I was operating out of my home, they would count as "business inventory or property" in the event of loss or damage and they wouldn't pay a red cent.

    Talk to your agent, and be as specific and open as possible about your pins and what you do with them.

    You may be in for a hell of a surprise.

    RussMyers

    #2 6 years ago

    Time to find a new agent.

    #3 6 years ago

    Did you two discuss buying an additional policy specifically to cover the pins?
    Does State Farm in PA offer that type of "adder"?

    #4 6 years ago

    I am in PA also and have Erie insurance. I don't remember the specifics of the conversation years ago, but my pins are covered under my homeowners insurance. I also have them covered with an additional rider policy that includes my wife's jewelry, my watches and both of our vintage toy collections. Oddly enough, if our house burned down, the house itself would be one of the easiest things to replace.
    I don't quite understand your agents definition of buy/sell/trade as a business. Don't all collectors do that in one form or another?

    #5 6 years ago
    Quoted from Replay:

    Time to find a new agent.

    Working on it.

    RM

    #6 6 years ago

    My experience with State Farm is they suck! I switched to Allstate and have been happy ever since. And Allstate told me my pins are covered under my home policy.

    #7 6 years ago
    Quoted from Pinball-is-great:

    Did you two discuss buying an additional policy specifically to cover the pins?
    Does State Farm in PA offer that type of "adder"?

    We discussed this.

    State Farm does not offer it.

    RussM

    #8 6 years ago

    Russ did you see my old thread where the guy posted about Geico collectables?
    Here is one option: http://www.geico.com/getaquote/collectibles/

    My guy at Allstate said to take picts of everything get them appraised or verified by someone in the business (Operator or Mr Pinball price guide etc) and they would add it to my policy. If you just have them under your Home owners with out them listed with values - he said they would cover them but don't expect to get the right amount of money for them if the house burns down.

    #9 6 years ago

    Yep, time for a new agent, that sounds odd to me. How many machines sold/traded in a year constitute a business and how the hell would they know anyway.

    I've had Statefarm for over 30 years and although I haven't had to make a claim for a pinball machine I have had a few claims over the years and they have always treated me very fairly and without hassle. I can't even imagine them interrogating me on just how many pinball machines I sold over the last year.

    It might be wise for you to have shorter conversations with your agent.

    #10 6 years ago

    Strange as I had this exact conversation with my State Farm agent last year. I was informed that my pins are covered under my homeowners. When I asked they had to get back to me after researching my question. Got a call back the next day and was informed that they are covered. I was also told to take photos and write down serial #s numbers to help if I need to make a future claim.

    Sounds like your agent doesn’t know, doesn’t care, and doesn’t want to be bothered by it.

    #11 6 years ago
    Quoted from fusion301:

    Russ did you see my old thread where the guy posted about Geico collectables?

    I did. It's a possibility, but I'm talking to Amica right now.

    RussM

    #12 6 years ago

    State Farm and coverage for my machines is included on a separate rider covering contents of the house. Having PICs and descriptions is helpful in the event of claim.

    #13 6 years ago

    My guy did ask me if it was a business, trading and swapping or selling and buying new ones etc did not constitute a business in his eyes it was a Hobby, like collecting baseball cards.

    #14 6 years ago

    I actually was going to contact my agent yesterday then got busy and forgot. Thanks for the thread as a reminder. I have emailed him and will let you know the answer, since I have State Farm as well.

    #15 6 years ago
    Quoted from RussMyers:

    The reasoning was that the buying, fixing up, and sometimes selling or trading of my pinball machines, even though they are my personal possessions and NOT a business I was operating out of my home, they would count as "business inventory or property" in the event of loss or damage and they wouldn't pay a red cent.

    This is the biggest line of bullshit i have ever heard of. he has no right to classify anything in your house as a business unless it is actually so. talk to a lawyer.

    #16 6 years ago

    I've used www.collectinsure.com in the past. They are specific to collectables, and cover based on a value amount as a whole. They also cover flooding, unlike most home policies. Anything over $5k has to be scheduled, but anything under that is just considered covered under the policy. So you could get $25k in coverage (of pins under $5k each), and switch and move pins around and not have to do anything else. Unfortunately lots of pins are over $5k now, so anytime you switched a game you'd have to report it. Not a huge deal really.

    I never had to make a claim, but I do feel more comfortable with them if something did happen. I am not sure what State Farm would say to "yeah my HEP MM burnt to a crisp in a fire, I need $22k for that".

    #17 6 years ago

    that doesnt sound right. homeowners should cover 1- the house, 2-contents inside house, the premium cost changes for the amounts you wants covered.... made a change to ours last year. i think maybe that agent doenst know what they are talking about. let me know what you find out russ

    #18 6 years ago
    Quoted from Anim8ormatt:

    This is the biggest line of bullshit i have ever heard of. he has no right to classify anything in your house as a business unless it is actually so. talk to a lawyer.

    Consulting with my attorney isn't free.

    The best response is voting with my feet/dollars.

    RussM

    #19 6 years ago
    Quoted from ebjimmyg:

    that doesnt sound right. homeowners should cover 1- the house, 2-contents inside house, the premium cost changes for the amounts you wants covered.... made a change to ours last year. i think maybe that agent doenst know what they are talking about. let me know what you find out russ

    I did this as well. the coverage limit on my policy was 60k for in house items. I added 18k to cover the pins. It added about 3 dollars a month to the policy.

    #20 6 years ago

    I have a Homesite homeowners insurance policy. I just confirmed with the insurer that my pins are covered under the personal possessions portion of the policy at replacement value. I already have the personal possessions coverage maxed out at $332,500.

    Now, trying to determine and get paid for "replacement value" is the $64,000 question. I'll just provide a few pics and tell the adjuster to look at ebay for current market values

    #21 6 years ago
    Quoted from kguenther6:

    My experience with State Farm is they suck! I switched to Allstate and have been happy ever since. And Allstate told me my pins are covered under my home policy.

    Congratulations. Good luck with a claim.

    #22 6 years ago
    Quoted from rplante:

    It might be wise for you to have shorter conversations with your agent.

    That would probably be an excellent way to have them deny your claims later.

    Better to get it nailed down ahead of time.

    RussM

    #23 6 years ago

    I use USAA and they said things like Pinball Machines would be covered under my homeowner's insurance but that for anything unusual in the house that may be of significant value (like Pinball machines) that I should take pictures and put them on file. Also, you just need to make sure your total coverage amount is sufficient in the event of a total loss. Now, I have never had to make a claim but that is what the representative told me and they have a very good service reputation.

    The only thing I have had to insure separately with them is jewelry (wife's wedding ring) in case of loss/damage.

    Troy

    #24 6 years ago

    I live in PA and have Liberty Mutual. I was told that my pins were covered under my homeowners policy as personal property. I probably need to do some more research on it to nail down values, et cet.

    But I was told they were certainly covered. The same as my TV, pool table, clothes, et cet.

    #25 6 years ago

    USAA gets top marks, but they are military-related only.

    I'm talking to Amica now.

    RussMyers

    #26 6 years ago

    Oh, just to clarify... but "put on file", they did not mean that I had to send the pictures to them... just that I would need to have pictures available to prove that they were amongst the losses. I.e. House burns down; If I have $30,000 of pinball machines, I would probably need to have some proof (pictures) to provide them with to demonstrate that I indeed suffered the loss and show the condition/value.

    Quoted from tbanthony:

    I use USAA and they said things like Pinball Machines would be covered under my homeowner's insurance but that for anything unusual in the house that may be of significant value (like Pinball machines) that I should take pictures and put them on file. Also, you just need to make sure your total coverage amount is sufficient in the event of a total loss. Now, I have never had to make a claim but that is what the representative told me and they have a very good service reputation.
    The only thing I have had to insure separately with them is jewelry (wife's wedding ring) in case of loss/damage.
    Troy

    #27 6 years ago
    Quoted from RussMyers:

    USAA gets top marks, but they are military-related only.
    I'm talking to Amica now.
    RussMyers

    If you had a father who was in the military, you may qualify. They have expanded their membership criteria over the years. I was never in the military myself but my dad was.

    #28 6 years ago

    All State here..
    No additional rider is needed and my pins fall into 'content coverage' which is about 350k. If I were exceed 350k in total contents I could buy a rider for the pins...but I'm no where near that.

    As someone else mentioned I also have 'replacement value' That would be an interesting conversation should I need it.

    I keep a spread sheet of my pins with 2 prices on it for each pin. One price is the 'quick sale' price for the wife..should something happen to mean. The other is what I consider 'replacement Value' for the insurance company.

    #29 6 years ago

    I believe that with my replacement cost insurance it would work very much the same as a loss with my 5 year old TV. They would pay to replace it with a new similar one. So if say my Bally Super Sonic was lost/stolen/damaged, I could replace it with a stern AC/DC. Seems ok to me.

    #30 6 years ago

    I've got State Farm, I guess I'd better do some checking.

    I've always had a strong disdain for insurance, this just adds to it.

    #31 6 years ago

    State farm sucks, all I could get was the sewer backup policy the covers contents valued up to 10k. I think it costs me about 400 bucks a year. I had to add that, because apparently they don't consider the basement contents to be part of your general possession coverage either. In the unlikely event that anything happens, I'm sure they'll find a way to screw me out of that too. The rep on the phone will tell you one thing, but the underwriter has the final say. So, whatever...

    #32 6 years ago

    According to my State Farm agent, his responses were coming directly from State Farm's underwriters and adjusters which he consulted extensively.

    RM

    #33 6 years ago

    I think you guys are missing some important information - yes your 50k pinball collection is covered under your 350k home owners policy, but when you tell them they are games from 20 years ago and you have no documentation of value on record or an appraisal/ condition etc they will give you 5k for your pile of ashes that you claim are collector quality pins and titles. Most of us don't have receipts for older pins - to be safe have them listed out as items and values in your policy.

    I have had lots of friends lose everything here due to Hurricane Sandy, and trust me when I tell you the insurance companies will screw you if you dont have every "i" dotted and "t" crossed... Flood insurance, oh yeh that covers your house just nothing inside of it...when the ocean goes through your living room the insurance companies will claim its an act of God and they arent responsible.

    Not to mention they are so far behind on claims here - people will wait 6 months if not longer to even think about paying back these folks, adjusters from texas and florida moved up here just to deal with the chaos

    #34 6 years ago
    Quoted from fusion301:

    when the ocean goes through your living room the insurance companies will claim its an act of God and they arent responsible.

    Yeah, I hate that act of god bs. Same thing when you hit a deer. Well I don't believe in god. When my consistent check gets lost in the mail, I'd like to explain to them the same thing. "It's an act of god, my policy doesn't cover that."

    I've heard of people having their garages broken into and robbed. That also wasn't covered since it wasn't a livable area of their house.

    Now I'm getting myself mad....

    #35 6 years ago

    Tree falls on your gameroom from wind storm - Act of God, not covered. After the tree falls your better off setting the place on fire by frying a turkey in the newly destroyed gameroom, thats covered.

    #36 6 years ago
    Quoted from fusion301:

    I think you guys are missing some important information - yes your 50k pinball collection is covered under your 350k home owners policy, but when you tell them they are games from 20 years ago and you have no documentation of value on record or an appraisal/ condition etc they will give you 5k for your pile of ashes that you claim are collector quality pins and titles. Most of us don't have receipts for older pins - to be safe have them listed out as items and values in your policy.
    I have had lots of friends lose everything here due to Hurricane Sandy, and trust me when I tell you the insurance companies will screw you if you dont have every "i" dotted and "t" crossed... Flood insurance, oh yeh that covers your house just nothing inside of it...when the ocean goes through your living room the insurance companies will claim its an act of God and they arent responsible.
    Not to mention they are so far behind on claims here - people will wait 6 months if not longer to even think about paying back these folks, adjusters from texas and florida moved up here just to deal with the chaos</blockquote

    Yep, or how about all the people that didn't actually live in a flood zone so you CAN'T buy flood insurance. They they get flooded and Oh well, not covered.

    #37 6 years ago

    Im an agent for Liberty Mutual in NY. PM me if you have a question and u live in NY.

    Pins r covered under personal property on the home policy. No appreciate value is used unless they are scheduled on the policy with documentation proving value.

    #38 6 years ago

    Insurance on pins should be covered under the contents portion of your HO policy. Be sure that the amounts listed on your declarations sheet meets or exceeds the value of your collection plus additional contents. Documenting the inventory and value of your collection on a regular basis is recommended. Be sure to actually read your policy, and the definitions of contents therein.
    Insurance companies are only as good as they are when the need arises. Allstate is notoriously shady, State Farm has stumbled the past few years and is trying to cut corners, USAA seems to be very good.

    #39 6 years ago

    I just went through this as well, recently switching carriers. I use a broker, who has consistently told me that the machines are covered under homeowner's insurance...so long as your policy is high enough. You should have an allocation for "contents" coverage, which is a % of home value I believe. When switching last month, I asked them to confirm with my new carrier, which they did. What we were told is, yes, they will cover them, but I would need to provide proof that I owned/possessed them, and that it would be a very good idea to have records of how much I spent "or" how much they are worth. Photo records are great, but it was recommended that I take a video, date it, and go through describing each machine I own, the cost/value, and condition. As appraisals are hard to get on these, I asked if copies of emails on purchase price and/or the annual published price guide would be sufficient and was told yes. You may not get the exact $ you paid or what they're worth, but it will get you close. I even asked if I could take separate riders on these, and was told no, as they are considered home fixtures...as in they don't leave the home like jewelry and fur coats and the like...so no need.

    What I have to do now is take photos of every machine and get those loaded on-line. Most of mine are up on Pinballowners, but that could use an update. And I may do the video thing too. Certainly easy enough.

    #40 6 years ago

    A lot of the times it is just a not very knowledgeable agent more so than it is the insurance company sucking for not covering things. The agent didn't do a very good job in getting the policy to the underwriters or something.

    Overall most insurance places are chumps and won't cover ya even though you paid your thousands per year for 30 year. What a mess they are

    #41 6 years ago
    Quoted from RussMyers:

    rplante said:
    It might be wise for you to have shorter conversations with your agent.

    That would probably be an excellent way to have them deny your claims later.

    Better to get it nailed down ahead of time.

    RussM

    Not at all. I didn't say you shouldn't verify that your machines are covered, but your agent only needs to know you have pinball machines with a value of $x.xx, are you covered? He doesn't need to know the titles you have or how often you sell or trade a machine. Now he has it in his mind your running a business from your home and I think this could have been avoided.

    Fusion has a very good point though, without documentation you may get far less than true replacement value for your games.

    #42 6 years ago

    State Farm just told me that my machines are covered under my homeowners policy. My agent recommended that I take pictures etc to document what I have.

    #43 6 years ago
    Quoted from roc-noc:

    Congratulations. Good luck with a claim.

    When I had State Farm car insurance they dropped my coverage after making 1 claim for a minor accident. With Allstate I have made claims (home and auto) with no problems.

    #44 6 years ago
    Quoted from tbanthony:

    If you had a father who was in the military, you may qualify. They have expanded their membership criteria over the years. I was never in the military myself but my dad was.

    EXACT same situation here! USAA is amazing! I have also talked with them about covering my pinballs and they said they were included under my homeowners insurance and in the event of replacement calculating costs would go off MSRP's + eBay research (Haha! ChaChing!)

    #45 6 years ago

    I just have a rider policy. We are only covered for a certain amount, and I have more pins than that, so I had to add additional coverage in that class...State Farm has business policies, buy one of those. Or change companies, I have to pay an extra monthly amount, but its insured. I have Farm Bureau

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