There is no better time than after the hustle and bustle of the holidays to conquer creating a Home Inventory. In speaking with people who have experienced loss through natural disasters like fire or flood, or been the victims of theft – the losses can be emotionally and financially devastating.
An properly documented home inventory can be a real asset in helping you get compensation quickly and accurately. It can also point out a huge gap that you may have between what you have, and what you are insured for. In fact, most people discover they are dramatically underinsured.
Unless you have accounted for all your things, you simply will not get what you should from the insurance company. Taking time to create a home inventory is worth the effort and could literally save you thousands of dollars. So, the key is to have a full inventory of your possessions.
Here are some tips and tools to get you on your way!
Software and Storage
Go digital. There are great software programs like the ones listed below that are very reasonably priced and are really easy to use.
List Your Possessions
This is where it can get overwhelming very quickly. A great tip is to literally do one room at a time. Make notes on objects’ condition, model, and estimated value. Locate the receipts BEFORE you move on the next room.
Take Photos and Video
A picture speaks a thousand words! Use a digital camera or smartphone to take close ups and then stand back and get some wide shots. Cover the room by shooting a video, you can verbally explain the room and any belongings.
TIP: Open drawers and closets as well while photographing and videoing.
Papers and Documents
Do not forget the importance of documents! Having digital backups of important documents can be a major lifesaver when originals are lost.
Create a Separate List for Luxury Items.
Big-ticket items such as jewelry, collectibles and high-end electronics may require separate insurance, and you might want a separate section on the list for them. Be especially detailed here with the following information.
- Serial number
- Purchase date and location
- Multiple photographs
Storing Your Lists
Make multiple copies (hard copies and digital) and store in secure locations. Online in a secure storage area, a safety deposit box in a bank, and a trusted relative’s home are all good locations.
For more on homeownership and for all your real estate needs, contact Chatel Group today! Sarah and Lisa are here to advise and advocate for you!