Let’s play a little game. Off the top of your head, jot down a list of everything that you own in 60 seconds. You probably remembered the high-value stuff, right? The game system, sound system, TV, an antique or a special piece of jewelry. However, overall, how confident are you that you could make an accurate list of everything you own? In the event of an insurance claim due to fire, theft, or any other number of maladies, having an accurate list of your personal property is an essential part of making sure that you get those items covered by insurance. Having a Home Inventory can solve this issue.
If you have a federally backed mortgage, you are required to carry home owner’s insurance. As part of the home insurance process, your agent should have had a conversation with you about your “personal property”. They should have asked you all sorts of nosy questions like, “Do you have any jewelry that needs special coverage?” and “Do you have collectibles or firearms?”. You may have wondered why this matters at the time, but they were asking for a reason.
Super high-value items are often covered on a separate policy with specific coverage (think of items like your wedding rings, expensive art work, etc. Pretty much anything that would need an appraisal). These are also probably the items that first came to mind when we played the game at the beginning of this blog. However, what about all your other items? What about your clothes and dishes and knick-knacks? Do you feel confident that you would remember all of what you lost in the event of a claim? The average household in America has approximately 300,000 items. The odds are not in favor of your remembering all those items when the time comes for a claims adjuster to assess your loss. So what do you do? You make a home inventory.
Check out these “Top Three Tips for Creating a Home Inventory”:
1-) Take pictures or videos:
To make a very simple home inventory, lay out all of your high-value tech devices to include your cell phone, computers, lap tops, iPad, cameras, game systems, sound systems, etc. and take pictures of the devices. If you have make and model information for the devices, snap a picture of that as well. Having all the devices laid out makes capturing pictures of these items easier. For larger items such as furniture and appliances, try taking pictures of rooms or make a short video being sure to walk through each room and capture the items there. When you get a new item, be sure to snap a picture and add that to your inventory file. Remember to save your pictures remotely by saving them in a cloud or emailing them to yourself. It does not help to have created an inventory but then lose the pictures because the device they are stored on was stolen or damaged.
2-) Store your paperwork remotely:
For high-value items such as wedding rings, high-end jewelry, etc., you likely will have an appraisal. Snap a picture of this appraisal or scan it electronically to save in your picture file. Be sure to save item such as appraisals, birth certificates, passports or other valuable items in a fire-safe box that is stored in a safe location. While these items are not losses that you would file on your insurance, losing these important papers can cost you time and money to replace.
3-) Save your receipts:
Saving your receipts can provide valuable information on the details of the item when it comes to claims time. If you prefer keeping paper records, try a file organizer and store this in your fire safe box. For the easiest storage method, try an electronic storage of your receipts. There are tons of apps out there that allow you to snap a picture of your receipt and file it by category electronically. You can check out some of these electronic options here. Whatever your method, be sure that you keep your receipts, especially for high-value items, handy for your claims adjuster.
Creating a home inventory should be part of your homeowner’s checklist. Having a system in place will save you headache, hassle, and money in the event of a claim.
To get the tailored policy coverage that you need for your home, valuables, auto, LIFE, or business, call The CHOICE Insurance Team today at 757-416-5100 and ask for a free, comprehensive review. Give us a call today!
All the Best,
The CHOICE Team
In 2008 Choice Insurance Agency was created out of the former Realty Consultants Insurance Agency founded in 1980 by George Ayers Capt. USN Ret. Since 2008 the Choice Insurance Agency has more than tripled in size and is continue on a track of rapid growth. The Choice Insurance Agency focuses on four areas of expertise: Private Client Group, Coastal Coverage, Senior Programs and Commercial/Business Insurance. Our business model has allowed us to expand into all of the states on the Eastern Seaboard from New York to Florida including Pennsylvania and DC to better serve our ever-growing client base. As an Insurance brokerage stationed in Hampton Roads with access to well over 40+ insurance carriers, the Choice Insurance Agency is able to shop for the best rates, cover those picky coastal zones and create a tailored plan to fit your insurance needs. The Choice Insurance Agency. Call us today and see why we are the top “CHOICE” in Hampton Roads.