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Antiques, gold and rare objects hoarded in homes

* Over £3500 of gold items (a 10% increase on last year);
* Coin and medal collections worth over £4400 each;
* Stamp collections worth a staggering £6138;
* Paintings and works of art worth £4209;
* Furs worth £2819; and
* Nearly £3500 of antiques.

Interestingly, Brits are also insuring on average £3619 of "curios" which are rare and intriguing objects which they keep in the home.

Julie Fisher, head of home insurance at MoneySupermarket, said: "This ‘hoarding’ is an interesting phenomenon seemingly borne out of our current difficult economic times. Perhaps many are shunning more traditional savings routes, buying gold and antiques rather stashing their money in the bank. It seems we are all looking at our possessions and scrutinising their proper value, keeping and insuring things that we may have thrown away or sold.

"Also, with the price of gold hitting close to a staggering high of USD $1900 an ounce, it’s interesting that many homes in Britain are holding onto their gold, rather than selling it for cash as many have done in the past."

Fisher said: "The era of ‘Rule Britannia’ is alive and well but whether people have inherited valuable heirlooms, or have scoured shops and markets to unearth valuable retro treasures, it’s crucial to understand how underestimating the overall value of home contents could leave you underinsured and severely out of pocket,

Data from the MoneySupermarket Monitor reveals the most frequently insured individual items by homeowners, in Spring 2011, are laptops (42%), bicycles (22%), and jewellery (19%), and also reveals the average value of "specified items" on people’s home insurance policies stood at £2799 in Spring 2011 (compared to £4288 in the Channel Islands, £3682 in Greater London, and £3118 in the South East).

The MoneySupermarket.com monitor also found that:

* Buildings and contents insurance decreased in price by 0.4% from June 2010 to May 2011 with the average annual premium now at £152.44;
* Homeowners in Jersey have seen the biggest decrease to the cost of their home insurance premiums;
* Claims made on buildings insurance are dominated by "escape of water", while "theft" and "vandalism" dominate claims made on contents cover.

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