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Insurance Valuation for Religious Organizations


Houses of worship are often woefully underinsured.


Existing on a wing and a prayer?
For millennia, churches, synagogues, mosques and temples have provided the fabric of community life as centers for worship, culture, arts and learning. Losing your house of worship to fire, flood, quake or wind would be a devastating experience. How much worse it would be to learn after the fact that your building had not been adequately insured? In our experience, many religious properties are discovered to be seriously underinsured - some at less than half of their actual replacement cost.

Your saving grace
Every year, American Appraisal completes appraisals of thousands of religious properties. Our appraisals are performed by our own full-time consultants dedicated exclusively to valuation and related advisory services. We have the knowledge and experience to appraise the many specialized components and high-value assets found in houses of worship. 

Our clients range from large pools of multiple dioceses to individual stand-alone churches; we serve clients at the church level, the insurance broker level and the insurer level. 

Our services
Our insurance valuation services address various risk management issues, such as the development of underwriting data for insurance placement, the performance of an insurance-to-value analysis and the allocation of premiums among individual parishes participating in regional insurance policies. Services include:

  • Building insurance valuations
  • Detailed inventory services
  • Primary and secondary construction, occupancy, protection and exposure (COPE) data analysis
  • Fine art and stained glass window valuations
  • Annual updating
  • Post-loss services for claims assistance
  • Tagging of movable equipment
  • Secondary windstorm (COPE) data analysis
  • Ground-level equipment protection
     

Putting a value on religious property requires special expertise that is rare among valuation firms.

We are accomplished in providing accurate valuations for altars, pulpits, pews, confessionals, decorative beams, stone and woodcarvings affixed to the building, pipe organs, bell works, carillons, balconies/choir lofts, steeples and spires, stages, communion rails, frescoes and baldachins. We also have extensive experience appraising stained glass, and have appraised windows from renowned stained glass studios such as Louis Comfort Tiffany, Franz Mayer and Henry Payne.

From a few years to hundreds of years old, from the tallest cathedrals to the smallest parish churches, American Appraisal has provided affordable insurance valuations to thousands of houses of worship around the world. Over the last five years alone, we have inspected and valued more than 5,500 churches for Episcopal and Catholic dioceses.

Our valuation experience is international.  
We have appraised houses of worship for most of the world’s faiths.  

We are the trusted firm to historic cathedrals and synagogues.  
We have provided our services to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, New York; Trinity Episcopal Church, Boston; Grace Cathedral, San Francisco; and Beth Sholom, Toronto.  

We have performed valuations of some of the world’s largest pipe organs.  
The Cathedral of St. John the Divine, New York, and All Saints Episcopal Church, Worcester, Massachusetts, have benefited from our services.


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