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Is your attic a treasure trove of undiscovered heirlooms?

Britons could unwittingly be sitting on a goldmine of inherited family heirlooms. What you thought of as granny’s old tat could be worth thousands and insurers are urging people to value inherited possessions to unearth hidden gems.

The valuable items most commonly inherited are jewellery, antique homeware, art, war medals and old coins. However, seemingly mundane trappings such as clothes, toys and even old shoes can also fetch a pretty penny in the right markets.

Guitar collectors, for example, will happily part with tens or even hundreds of thousands of pounds for vintage Gibson Les Paul guitars made between 1958-60, famously used by rock music icons such as Guns & Roses’ Slash and now widely reproduced.

Phil Ost of Zurich, an insurer, said: “It’s all too easy to think the value of your home contents isn’t worth the bother, but it’s important to check that your sums add up.

“Inherited art, jewellery, and war medals can be incredibly valuable, as can paintings or even old toys. Just think of Antiques Roadshow – getting a professional involved can unearth some unexpected treasures.”

The most likely groups to have valuable heirlooms hidden away in the home are Baby Boomers and people aged 55 or more.

If you find something you think may be of value but you are not sure, you can take it to a professional who can give you a potential price for insurance purposes.

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