Keep a home inventory

May 07, 2004
By Steve Smead Registered State Farm AgentThis one goes in the category of those things we are planning to do when we get the time – making or updating a home inventory.It may not sound like an exciting activity, but in the event of a calamity such as a fire, burglary, flood, or tornado, a current home inventory can save a lot of time, money and frustration in the insurance settlement process.Take this test. Sit down and try to make a detailed list of what’s in each room of your dwelling. It’s amazingly hard to remember all the “stuff” that accumulates – wall hangings, curtains, cookware, clothing, sports gear, jewelry, knick-knacks, rugs, clocks, etc. Get the picture?This weekend, go ahead and bit the bullet. Video or photo each room and list major items on paper. Record brand, model, date and amount of purchase, if possible (serial numbers are important on some items). Also, saving receipts on big-ticket items is always a good idea.
For antiques and jewelry, written descriptions or appraisals are important. Don’t forget the closets, and remember, even your attic may be full of valuables.You can usually get a home inventory checklist from your insurer. These lists are great tools to help organize your records.Finally, remember to update your inventory every year or so, and keep it in a save location away from your dwelling. Taking the time to make and update your inventory now can help you in working with your insurer later in maximizing your recovery should you have the need.

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