Simple Steps for an Insurance Home Inventory
You might have already taken stock of the big things, but in an emergency, could you do a mental household inventory list and name all your valuables? That's why it's important to do a home inventory. For peace of mind, and for insurance purposes, a home inventory is just a smart move. It can help you decide how much and what type of homeowners' insurance to buy and help speed up the claims process. It may sound like a daunting task, but it is one that will be worth the time should you ever need it. Where do you start?
- Starting a Household Inventory –Get organized, have a method to the madness
You'll want to document things like the insides of your tool boxes and closets and it will be easier to do when they are tidied up. Map out your course by move through your household methodically, this will decrease your chances of missing important items. Don’t forget to include your attic, garage and sheds.
- Making a Home Inventory List- Document Everything
Photography is your friend; go from room to room, taking pictures or even a video to help you as you go. Make special note of your most valuable items (jewelry, antiques, electronics) and where you keep them. It's also helpful to keep receipts and to note the serial numbers for items that have them.
There are also many apps available to help you do this. Your insurance may have offer and app or a free tool to help collect the information you will need.
The type of items you’ll want to include on your household inventory list would be:
Furnishings, Appliances, Electronics, Lawn and Garden, Antiques and Collectibles.
Details to include about the items on your household inventory list:
- Provide a general description of the inventory item
- List the quantity of those items
- Note the date each item was purchased
- Specify how much you paid for each item on your inventory list
- Store It Somewhere Safe
Resist the urge to keep your inventory list at home. Some safer alternatives would be to print a copy and keep it in a safety deposit box, or on the Cloud. Whatever you do, don't put your home address on your inventory list (in-case it falls into the wrong hands), and don’t keep your only record of your possessions on your property.
- Maintaining Your Home Inventory List- Update it Frequently
Whenever you make a big purchase, or even just every couple of years, reevaluate. This is also a good excuse to de-clutter as you go. Remember, an out-of-date home inventory could hold up the claims process at a time when that's the last thing you need.