Which one is best for your homeowner’s policy: actual cash value or replacement cost value?

Insurance policies are full of language and terms that may not be clear right off the bat. Many terms are specific to the industry and to the specific type of insurance that is being purchased. Having a local insurance agent for all of your insurance coverage allows you to chat about all the details with your agent so you completely understand your policy. If you haven’t done this, there are many potential claims where it’s easy to assume you have full coverage.

EXAMPLE: Your $4,000 couch was ruined in a home fire. After filing a claim, you might assume you will be fully reimbursed for your couch since you have a homeowner’s insurance policy. However, it depends what type of coverage you have.

There are two such terms on a homeowner’s insurance policy: Replacement Cost and Actual Cash Value. These terms can be a bit confusing to decipher between.

  • Replacement cost is very simple: Your insurance company literally reimburses you for the covered personal property lost based on replacement cost at the time of loss with no depreciation. Replacement cost policies tend to be a bit more expensive since you are essential getting a brand new item for one that may have otherwise depreciated. Replacement costs are agreed upon by all parties before the insurance policy is finalized. If you have high-ticket items (jewelry, art, RV, boat, luxury vehicle or classic car) this may be the best type of coverage if you can afford it.
  • Actual cash value is the cost to replace the item minus any depreciation. For your damaged couch, if you had an actual cash value policy, your insurance would pay out the cost of the couch minus any depreciation. Therefore, your couch is worth less than what you paid. An actual cash value policy can put you in a tight spot if your items cost more to replace or repair than your policy pays out.

No matter which policy type you choose, the local experts at Heuer Insurance Agency can answer any questions and walk you through the different types of scenarios to see which policy type is right for your situation. Our local insurance agency can guide you through your homeowner’s insurance policy and more, like auto insurance. Our years of insurance experience can save you a bundle, and we live right in your area, so we know firsthand what your insurance needs might be.

How to Protect Your Valuable Jewelry

Jewelry is valuable not only because of its beauty, but the special meaning behind it. Does it represent 30 years of marriage? Was it passed down from a great grandmother? Was it given to you to celebrate a special moment? Between its sentimental value, as well as financial value, our local insurance agency wants you to be fully protected.

Anything can happen to your jewelry, whether it’s stolen, damaged or accidentally slips off your finger while swimming in the ocean. While memories of the jewelry itself cannot be replaced, a good insurance policy can provide financial protection to an unfortunate situation.

If you own jewelry that’s valued over $1,000, consider getting an insurance policy endorsement to insure its value.

Like other valuables coverage, insurance for your jewelry can simply be added to your home or renters insurance policy on something called a “floater.” It’s a simple insurance policy extension. A good policy will cover everything from theft and damage. The cost of coverage varies, typically $1 – $2 per $100 in value for a yearly policy. So, for a $5,000 ring, you’d expect to pay $50-$100. By calling Heuer Insurance Agency, we will ensure we find the best coverage for your jewelry.  We can also help answer any questions regarding ‘what if’ situations.

Here are some questions to discuss with our agents so you fully understand your insurance coverage.

  • If your jewelry is stolen, will you be reimbursed the full amount you paid? What happens if it was accidentally lost?
  • If your jewelry has appreciated over the course of owning it, will your insurance company honor its new value or what you paid for it?
  • What happens if you simply lost a small piece of your jewelry? Would you insurance cover the cost of replacing the stone?
  • Don’t forget to ask for discounts! If you plan to safely store your jewelry when you are not wearing it, you could qualify for a discount from some insurance companies.

While we hope you never have to experience an insurance claim for your jewelry, it’s always important to be prepared.

Items you need in case your jewelry is lost or stolen:

  • Original Receipt
  • An appraisal – if you don’t have the original receipt, at least have an appraisal.
  • GIA Certificate or similar reputable certificate
  • Take photos of all of your jewelry and store them on the cloud or a zip drive that’s stored in your safe.

Keep these items in a safety deposit box or safe in your home. If you’d like to know more about insuring your jewelry, contact an agent at our office. We’ll give you the best options for insuring your jewelry as well as answer any other questions you may have.

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February 2018 Blog

Welcome back to the HIA readers!  We appreciate you following us in our blog efforts and welcome any and all feedback, comments or questions.   As a loyal reader, you must remember us getting on our soap box and strongly counseling our readers to NOT follow a work truck, or passenger vehicle or truck, with virtually ANYTHING in or on the back out of fear that something may fly out… Well I have the VERY BEST story ever as to why you don’t want to follow a truck with anything in the back of it!

A couple of months ago while on an annual trip to Oregon to do some salmon fishing, Larry and Starla Heuer were driving on Interstate 5 just North of Medford, fortunately on a divided highway, when all of a sudden they looked over to the other side of the highway where a seemingly expensive and very tricked out black Ford Mustang was coming off a tow truck at 60 miles an hour. You should have seen the chrome parts and hot rod wheels flying off that classic car!

The real strange part of the story is, although this happened in a split second, it was on a straight away and they could see the tow truck continue down the road and never once saw any brake lights from the tow truck!  Be careful out there friends.


As for Agency happenings, we have had a few. Dustin Snell got married early in January. We couldn’t be happier for him or his new wife Cindy. Dustin also celebrated a work anniversary just yesterday; feel free to shoot him a call congratulating him on another successful year.



Also, Derek and his Rotary Club (Reno Midtown) were recognized at the area Foundation dinner for their work in support of the Rotary Foundation. We support Rotary here at HIA and would suggest you do too. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have pledged a 2-1 match on any donation which is being used to fight the eradication of the Polio disease.

Lastly on the agency front, we have an awesome new twist to our referral program. This is so new I haven’t filled in the team here at HIA so you’ll have to check back next month to find out what it is. I can tell you this… it’s an opportunity you won’t want to miss!


Thanks for reading and please BE SAFE this weekend. There are a lot of unsafe drivers after the Super bowl and we’d hate for a loved one or client to get caught on the wrong end of an accident or DUI checkpoint. Please consider a designated driver, UBER or a Taxi when the game is over.


God Bless America and its proud Military!  Thanks for keeping us free!