ACE Private Risk Launches Home Contents Valuation Service at Policy Inception

October 4, 2011

ACE Private Risk Services, the high-net-worth personal lines business of the ACE Group, has introduced a new service that provides guidance to homeowners and their agents about the value of the contents in their home. Home Contents Valuation capability, developed in conjunction with Asset Archives, Inc., offers a select group of ACE policyholders customized estimates for determining their personal property coverage at policy inception.

People rarely know how much it would cost to replace everything in their home after a total loss, and the prospect of thoroughly cataloging all of their possessions is often overwhelming. As a result, contents coverage has too often been based on assumptions: either a rough guess by the client or agent, or a default percentage of the home’s structural value set by the insurance carrier.

Research conducted by ACE and Asset Archives suggests that the status quo leaves many owners of high value homes with significant gaps in contents coverage. In a pilot program with agents, ACE and Asset Archives completed more than 400 estimates over a four-month period and found that nearly half of the homes studied had insufficient contents coverage. For homes with structural values between $2 million and $7 million, the average level of underinsurance approached $600,000. Homes with contents coverage pegged to less than 50 percent of the structural value were underinsured for personal property in nearly 70 percent of the reports reviewed.

Asset Archives has developed a proprietary system and database that captures the values of more than 200,000 items totaling $1 billion and covering more than 2,000 categories, including electronics, kitchenware, books, furniture, apparel, outdoor furnishings, sporting goods, equipment and more. The data were aggregated over the past 10 years of documenting and valuing the high quality contents of luxury and custom-built homes.

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