Furniture destroyed by a fire.

Would you be able to list all of your personal possessions if your house was broken into or destroyed by fire?  Although most of us may never face any of these occurrences, it never hurts to be prepared just in case.

So, where do you start when trying to create home inventory?  First, you need to realize that the process itself isn’t hard, but it is time consuming, so plan on dedicating at least a day to getting it complete.  Then it is important to decide on the best way for you inventory your items–room by room or by like items (electronics, furniture).  Be sure to walk through each room, you are likely to forget items if you try to rely on memory.  Next, be sure to take photographs.  This not only helps provide proof of ownership, but you can also photograph the serial numbers or make/models which will help determine value and could possibly help recover stolen items.  Provide your best guess on the number of each item you have and if you do not have the receipts to show how much you paid for the item at purchase, go ahead and note what you approximately paid for the item.  (Remember:  you can purchase insurance policies that will provide replacement cost coverage for your personal property, but you may not receive the full replacement amount until the item is actually replaced, hence the need to know the age of the items.)  Finally, it is important to store your information in a safe place.  It may be beneficial to save your pictures on a cloud or on a flash drive that you can store in a safe place with your insurance policy information.

There are also apps available on your smartphone and tablets that can assist you in completing your home inventory.  Be sure to go ahead and complete yours as soon as possible so you won’t be caught in a situation like this Geico commercial.