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11-19-2009, 10:13 AM   #1
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Insuring lenses?

Now that I will soon own a FA 31mm, I am curious - do people insure their lenses? If so, whom do you approach for such insurance? Sorry for a pretty broad question.

11-19-2009, 10:18 AM   #2
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We have a few things insured outside of our normal house insurance policy. You should be able to insure things such as camera equipment etc as part of a separate policy. You will pay an additional charge for this of course. Contact a few local insurance companies for information.

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11-19-2009, 10:32 AM   #3
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I had my camera equipment insured for a long time, down to every last filter etc.

The cost is usually some percentage of the insured value. On my policy it was 2% of the value listed, and there was no deductable.

Here is the catch. the value of the equipment changes over time, so unless you continually update the policy and values annually, to represent the replacement cost, you can still get left behind.

Your general household insurance covers for loss, even of things you may take out of the house like a camera. YOu should check and see what you are covered for, in terms of replacement. For example, is it equivelent new model? etc.

YOu also have to consider the type of loss. Your household insurance may not cover accidental damage like if you drop a lens, but a specific policy rider for all loss would.

Household policies may also have a deductable, but a separate rider would not,

It is all a question of what you want to insure, how much you want to insure it for, and for what types of loss.

Note, I believe a lot of home policies do not cover "professional equipment" and for the insurance company, that means if you sell your pictures you are a pro.
11-19-2009, 04:56 PM   #4
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I have my camera gear insured via Personal Articles policy from State Farm, which is a separate policy and not just a rider on my homeowners. It requires to explicitly list everything that will be covered, and you pay based on the cost of the gear, but it's an all-risk worldwide policy with no deductible, and it cover gear used professionally. $40/year covers several thousand dollars worth of equipment.

11-20-2009, 01:10 PM   #5
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USAA has pretty nice renter's insurance. Only catch is that if you make any profit at all using the items being insured, they won't honor the claim. So something as innocuous as having a SmugMug account where people can buy prints may be enough to invalidate your coverage.

I'm not sure if this is the case for all renter's insurance, but you definitely want to read the fine print.
11-20-2009, 04:13 PM   #6
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Curious - how does then a rental place like CameraLensRental insure their lenses? Isn't that considered property?
11-20-2009, 05:15 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaman Quote
Curious - how does then a rental place like CameraLensRental insure their lenses? Isn't that considered property?
Yes, a lens would be considered property (chattel) under an individuals P&C (property and casualty) policy.

But for rentals, it would be an insured business loss.
11-20-2009, 05:23 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
I have my camera gear insured via Personal Articles policy from State Farm, which is a separate policy and not just a rider on my homeowners. It requires to explicitly list everything that will be covered, and you pay based on the cost of the gear, but it's an all-risk worldwide policy with no deductible, and it cover gear used professionally. $40/year covers several thousand dollars worth of equipment.
The catch is, it's an absolute last resort to claim on a policy like this. You'd need near total loss from an insured peril to justify a claim because the insurer will definitely decline renewed coverage due to moral hazard. It's not a replacement service but an indemnity.

An alternative policy is one that has a deductible equal to 80% of a mid-range valuable item. That way you are sharing the risk with the underwriter and are more likely to become re-insured thereby covering you for a total loss (theft, airport) as well as multiple smaller losses (oops, dropped my 31).

In the long run, the latter policy is greater value and considered an actuarially better product, protecting both the smaller losses partially and the entire package sequentially even with interrupting claims. Too many people purchase inexpensive, one-off premium policies where they could be spreading the risk out over multiple exposures chronologically, which defines the photographic hobby!

Something to think about.

11-21-2009, 12:03 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by Aristophanes Quote
The catch is, it's an absolute last resort to claim on a policy like this. You'd need near total loss from an insured peril to justify a claim because the insurer will definitely decline renewed coverage due to moral hazard.
What evidence do you have of that?
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