We have created a new free, web based tool: Exploded Home Inventory Checklist
What would you do if your home was destroyed during a natural disaster? Would you remember every possession in your home? It isn’t likely that you would. This is why creating and updating a home possession inventory is important. Ultimately an inventory helps establish a replacement value for all of your belonging. It also makes sure that you don’t forget anything. If you do have a loss, you will have to provide your insurance company with a full inventory. It is much easier to be prepared ahead of time instead of having to create something after the effects while dealing with the emotional effects of loss.
A home inventory is a list of your personal possessions
that helps you document what you’re owed in case of a disaster. A visual record of these things also helps the company come up with the proper replacement value for all of your possessions. This protection allows you easy to access information that will help substantiate your loss.
Tips for Creating Inventory Checklist
The more detailed you make your inventory the better.
However, don’t make it too complicated. An easy way to create one is to go from room to room photographing or videotaping the contents of each room. After this, jot down descriptions and details for each of the times. Don’t forget to mention things in cupboards, drawers and closets too. Also, include the garage and the basement too in your list.
Your inventory list should have all brand names and serial numbers of products. Digital photographs stored on a flash drive are also ideal. Receipts are also a great thing to have on hand with your inventory (if applicable). This is great for big ticket items such as electronics and furniture. Store all warranty information or product manuals in one place for easy access. Always keep your inventory current. Update it yearly especially if you sell, give away things or buy new ones. Failing to update your inventory could result in not having enough insurance coverage or not receiving your full benefits.
If something arises, you will need to file a homeowner’s insurance claim. By having an updated home inventory checklist, the process will go smoother and be much faster and easier. It will also help you to receive the most from your insurance company. This inventory can give you peace of mind making sure that all of your possessions are accounted for. Creating an inventory will help you discover whether or not you’re under or over insurance or have just the right amount of coverage. Your policy will also alert you of items that aren’t covered by your current policy.
For those with home-based businesses, consult your insurance provider directly. Many policies do not cover anything related to the business. Speaking with a broker will help you to determine whether or not you need separate liability for belongings associated with your small business.
Most importantly, your updated and detailed inventory list should be stored in a safe location whether a storage unit, the home of a relative or close friend or in a safety deposit box. It is a good idea to have an electronic copy somewhere on your email server too. Also make copies of all important documents such as passports, birth certificates, deed to your home, insurance documents, car ownerships, bank account, credit card numbers and/or tax returns from the last five years. Put these copies with the inventory in a safe place too.
Generally a standard home insurance policy will cover up to 70-80% of your value of your home (depends on your particular insurance coverage). If your possessions exceed this number, it may be time to speak to a broker to make sure you have the right limitations on your particular policy.
One app that helps you build an inventory is
Nest Egg ($2.99 on iOS). This helps you store data about your purchases, whether new or old, as well as warranty expiration dates and photos. It is easy to use and helps you access a list of household items that you’ve cataloged in a category-by-category list. Adding items is easy and each entry is organized with name, description, manufacturer, serial number, category and the location in your home. The app can use the phone’s camera in order to scan the barcode of the item too.
An Android alternative is MyHomePro: Home Inventory. This app is similar to Nest Egg allowing users to scan bar codes and search within their list freely. It allows you to specify details of your insurance policies including policy numbers and deductibles. It is straightforward, easy to use and most importantly, easy to navigate.