Imagine, for a moment, you’ve lost your home in a major fire, tornado, hurricane or other disaster. Now imagine you’ve not only lost your home, but everything you own that was inside. Your clothes and furniture are gone. Appliances and cookware are destroyed or missing. You have no possessions other than the clothes on your back. Pictures and paintings are gone, your shoes, bedding and everything in every closet….destroyed in minutes.
Even if you have homeowners’ insurance, how would you know what you lost?
Odds are you couldn’t possibly recall every tool you owned or the shirt and pants you bought. The task could be impossible and odds are you would miss many valuable items in a claim. So what is the solution?
It is keeping a household inventory off-premises, where it couldn’t be destroyed with your belongings.
This may sound like a daunting task, and it can be initially. But once you have a household inventory, you only need to maintain it as you purchase new items and get rid of old ones.
No, a household inventory doesn’t need to include a list of everything you own and receipts for every purchase, although it would make claims much easier. It should, however, at least include an accounting of major items like furnishings, appliances, electronics and collectables.
A household inventory can also give you a better indication of your net worth and if your “contents coverage” of your home insurance policy is sufficient.
While some choose to keep a detailed list in a safe deposit box or even digitally in “the cloud”, others will maintain video recordings of their possessions, taping room by room and closet to closet.
The point is, the more accurate your inventory, the more accurate your claim will be in a total loss.
While total, devastating losses are relatively rare, inventories can also prove valuable in partial losses. Don’t wait. Start working on your household inventory today.
If it has been longer than you can remember since you’ve even looked at your home insurance policy, now may be a good time. Contact our independent home insurance agents today. The result may be better coverage, at a price you can appreciate.