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Trading your old pews for new chairs? Here is a quick reminder that might save you some money (and perhaps a little embarrassment) down the road.

Pews are usually anchored to the floor and, for insurance purposes, are considered part of the building structure. If your building should burn or if the pews are damaged, they are usually replaced or repaired based on the portion of your policy that insures the building structure itself. Their value is included in the total value of the structure.

Unanchored chairs are usually considered part of the building contents. If they are damaged, they are repaired or replaced based upon the CONTENTS section of your policy – which is different from the portion that covers the STRUCTURE.

When considering insurance, some folks focus on the value of the building structure and underestimate the value of all the things they have inside the building – the contents. $50,000 or $100,000 may sound like plenty of contents coverage, but most churches have accumulated more items that fall under that description than they realize. Computers, projectors, screens, monitors, tables, chairs, puppets, tablecloths – may all be included in this category. And if you just bought 300 chairs for $50 each, you may have just added another huge chunk.

When you start adding it all up, you may be surprised at the value of all the stuff you have inside your church. Check with your agent and see if you have enough contents insurance to cover it all.

And for good measure, take a look at all the things you have permanently fastened to the walls, ceilings, and floors of your buildings. Often, these are considered part of the structure and would not be covered as contents.

Let your agent explain what is covered under each section of your policy, then make sure you have enough insurance to replace or repair everything that you own.