Protecting your family heirlooms

    Heirlooms are a part of a family’s legacy and for some they’re the last remaining connection to the past. Taking a look at your great-grandfather’s watch or an old collection of photos can bring you closer to your dearly departed and family history.

    Heirlooms can be easily damaged through light, handling or heat, though, so it’s important to take the necessary steps to keep your family treasures safe and secure. Use our top tips to protect your legacy today so future generations can enjoy it as much as you.

    Insure them

    Some of our heirlooms need a bit more protection than others. Especially with items that have a greater monetary value such as jewellery, there is the danger that they could be stolen, lost or damaged after excessive handling.

    You will want your inherited antiques to last for as long as possible, so you could look into jewellery insurance for some extra peace of mind.

    Research them

    Heirlooms come in many forms and likely have different maintenance requirements. Doing some of your own research can help you better understand your item’s needs and learn more about the way your ancestor lived.

    There are some easy steps you can take to discover the story of your family heirloom, such as asking your relatives or looking for a patent number. After your detective work, remember to record the keepsake’s history.

    Store them properly

    While some family heirlooms such as furniture or silverware might be used every day, others might be saved for special occasions or not used at all. Creating a secure space to store these keepsakes is crucial for keeping them in pristine condition and safe from anyone who shouldn’t access them.

    There are very specific storing requirements for some heirlooms to do with light, heat and humidity. Safes are great for protecting your family treasures from the elements and anyone who shouldn’t be handling them.

    Get an assessment

    If you’re struggling to find out information about your keepsake, don’t hesitate to contact the experts. Having your heirloom appraised can provide you with important dates, history and prices. It also means you have the right information to give future generations and ensure it continues to be cared for properly.

    You can visit antique dealers or keep an eye out for antique fairs in your area to get some advice. You could pick up some handy storage tips or get a range of opinions on what your heirloom could be worth.

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