To obtain a home owners insurance policy that provides enough coverage for all personal property, homeowners must have an accurate idea of their possessions and their value. Creating an inventory of personal property is the best way for homeowners to do this. Although not required by home insurance companies, inventories make dealing with claims much easier and help homeowners get the most for their items when they suffer a loss.
Why Inventory Personal Belongings?
There are two very important reasons why every homeowner should make an inventory of all the items in their home. First, an inventory of all possessions makes it easier for a homeowner and their home insurance company to determine the appropriate level of coverage needed to protect all these items. Second, an inventory is invaluable in helping homeowners get appropriate reimbursement when they have a loss.
This makes the insurance claims process easier and more accurate because it should eliminate the disputes and disappointment that can arise when no actual record of possessions exists. A detailed inventory helps prove ownership of items that are stolen and the condition of those that are damaged. This allows home owners insurance companies to process claims based on what is shown in a home inventory.
Creating A Home Inventory
The best way for homeowners to create a detailed and useful home inventory is to either photograph their possessions or make a video recording of them. Doing so proves ownership of all these items as well as the condition of those items when the photos or video were made. Should a loss occur, this record of personal items will help homeowners be correctly reimbursed for their possessions.
Creating a video inventory can be a considerable task, so it is important for homeowners to prioritize inventory efforts. Begin with cleaning the home to be free of clutter and then begin videoing. Video the exterior of the home first, then continue inside with the most important items and rooms first. Leave the less important, easily replaced items for last.
Go room to room through the house taking video of all furnishings and personal items, even to the extent of opening drawers, cabinets, and closets to show what is in them. More valuable items should be taken out and specifically displayed; any important details should be documented during the recording. Although it may take a while, it is important to go through the home room-by-room until all personal possessions have been recorded.
Keep Inventory Records Safe
After investing the time and effort in making an inventory video, homeowners must keep that recording safe. Videos shot digitally can be stored in the Cloud through various online storage options, including some made specifically for storing home inventory videos. Photographic inventories should be printed out and stored somewhere other than in the home for safekeeping. The purpose of having a home inventory is to be able to present it to home owners insurance companies should a loss occur, so these records should be carefully guarded .
One of the main issues homeowners have when making a claim with their home insurance is either not having enough coverage or not receiving the value they anticipated receiving for their possessions. This happens either because homeowners did not purchase enough coverage for their personal property, they have no record of ownership of these items, or there are value disputes over condition.
All of this can be avoided and the home owners insurance claim process facilitated with a detailed home inventory list. The best thing a homeowner can do to protect their personal property is to purchase the correct amount of home owners insurance coverage and inventory their possessions, starting today!
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