July 22 2014 Latest news:

High gold prices fuelled by the global financial crisis mean that checking the insurance values of jewellery has become an important factor in domestic management of finances.

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As family jewels soar in value in the wake of the ‘gold is a safe investment’ theory, home insurance may need reviewing.

The gold in your house may be significantly underinsured, meaning replacing jewlellery which has been lost or stolen could become impossible after a claim.

Jewellery needs to be professionally valued to take into account the soaring prices.

And with an average home in Britain thought to contain more than £1,100 of gold, this has become a widespread requirement.

Paul Richardson, home insurance specialist at NFU Mutual, said: “If the contents of some jewellery boxes needed to be replaced, some owners may be devastated to find their current insurance policy would only pay out a fraction of the cost of replacements.

“Sentimental items such as engagement rings and heirlooms passed down through the family are typically underinsured as many current owners have never had them valued.”

Nicholas Major, chairman of the National Association of Goldsmiths, agreed that it was vital people had their jewellery valued by a member of the Institute of Registered Valuers to avoid future upset:

“People who have not had their jewellery valued in the last five years need to seek advice from a registered valuer immediately,” said Mr Major.

“Gold prices have more than trebled since 2004 and the price of gemstones has also varied.

“Some people may be in for a shock, but better to be surprised by the true value now than be handed a bombshell when trying to replace lost or stolen valuables.”

Mike Powell, insight analyst for General Insurance at Defaqto, the independent financial research company, said it was very important to include jewellery when calculating personal possessions.

“They could make up a large chunk of any claim,” said Mr Powell.

“An accurate record of jewellery can be invaluable should you need to make a claim and it is very useful to have photographs of any valuables in case they are lost of stolen.”

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