The Importance of Home Inventory

The Importance of Home Inventory

Home inventory is important for your own safety!
If a certain room in your house caught on fire, could you remember everything in it? In 2009, fires alone caused $7.6 billion in property damage to home owners (NFPA).

While we don’t like to think about our belongings being stolen, burnt, or swept away in a tornado, having an inventory of your possessions in case of accidents may really pay off. Having an up-to-date home inventory is common practice in hurricane stricken areas, but it is always important no matter where you live to have a way to account for everything in case of a disaster such as home inventory. You and your insurance agent can work together to make sure you’re insured the right amount and can replace everything if you have a current list.
So how do you create home inventory? What goes on a home inventory list?

Keeping a home inventory may take a little time, but it is really easy. With the advancement of technology, we have all kinds of options! To start out your home inventory, you may take a notebook and walk room to room writing down everything of value. This may include the obvious such as furniture, appliances, and electronics. But you may also want to include any kitchen sets, collector’s items, tools, jewelry etc. Make sure you write down make, model, and serial numbers as they apply. Now it is up to your discretion what holds value and should be documented.
Now that you’ve written everything down, you can stop there if you’d like but there are many options available as to where to keep your home inventory.
1. Keep your notebook pages in a fireproof safe or in a trusted location such as a friend or neighbor’s house.

2. Type them up into Microsoft Word or Excel. Save them on your computer, and print a hardcopy to keep separately either in a safe or a different location.

3. If you own or can borrow a video camera, give a walking tour throughout your home and make sure to point out your valuables and zoom in on or read out loud the serial numbers if applicable. Again, keep this tape in a fireproof safe or on another property.

4. Use a program online such as Online Inventory with StuffSafe. I have personally started my home inventory on this website. I was a little leery about listing my valuables on the internet, but they never ask you for your address and you could give an alias if it makes you more comfortable. It’s a free program that is paid for by the ads on the side. You can attach photos or files to each item so you can prove their condition at that time and they have all kinds of organizational tools. At any time, you can download your inventory onto your computer or a disc. If your computer were to be stolen, your inventory is still stored safely online and accessible from any computer.

While it would be unfortunate, steps can be taken to ensure that you have the insurance coverage and records you need to get everything going again!

Anya
The Allen Group

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