Home is more than a place to rest your head at night, it’s a foundation you’ve built for you and your loved ones filled with precious memories and treasured possessions. It took time to turn your house into a place you can call home. All of your hard work now fills your home as assets. In the event of a burglary, fire or another event which you may have lost some of your precious assets, it can be difficult to remember the specifics on every possession that you’ve accumulated over the years. This is why we recommend creating an inventory of all your possessions in the event of a potential insurance claim. Taking the time to record your belongings now can help us put your life back together faster later.
Here are 5 easy steps to help you build your home inventory checklist.
Step 1: Take Some Time to Walk Through Your Property
Depending on how many possessions you own, documenting all of them will take time and effort. The more details you can include in your inventory, the easier it will be for you to recover from a claim. Pick an easy place to start, and tackle your inventory room by room. Be sure to document any possessions from either the interior or exterior of your home that may be of value. Some information to include may be:
- Basic information – Describe each item you record, and note where you bought it, how much it cost, the make and model and any other details that may help in the event of a claim.
- Serial numbers – Serial numbers can usually be found on the back or bottom of major appliances and electronic equipment, this will make these items very easy to identify.
- Receipts – store sales receipts, appraisals, and purchase contracts.
- Clothing Category – Clothes may not seem like much, but imagine the value of everything in your closet, it’s more than you may think. Account for clothing in a general fashion, for example, “6 pairs of jeans, 2 pairs of sneakers, 9 dresses…”
- Pictures – Take photos of individual rooms or items. Label your pictures with a description including the above considerations. Don’t forget some of the items you may have stored away in closets and drawers.
- Video – Walk through your home to shoot a video of your property, describing it as you go.
Step 2: Don't Forget Property Off-Site
Your possessions housed in a self-storage facility are also covered under your homeowners policy, make sure you remember to document these as well.
Step 3: Keep Your List in a Safe Place
We recommend storing your list in multiple locations to ensure it is not lost, stolen, or damaged in the event of a disaster in your home.
- Off-site – Store a paper copy of your inventory somewhere outside of the home, perhaps a safety deposit box or a close family member or friend.
- Digital – Keep a copy on an external drive or online storage account such as OneDrive, the Cloud, or Dropbox.
Step 4: Update Your Inventory Often
When you make a significant purchase, add the details to your list while they are fresh in your mind and accessible. You should also delete any items you have replaced or no longer own.
Step 5: Consider Valuable Items
Big ticket items such as jewelry, art, and collectibles may have increased in value since you purchased them. Check with your Rockford Mutual Agent to ensure you have sufficient insurance coverage for these items as they will be insured separately. Consider storing these items off-site if you don’t wear or use them.