You’ve worked hard to accumulate your belongings. Would you be able to remember all of your possessions if they were stolen or destroyed in a disaster? By taking the time to document your belongings before the unexpected happens, you can help ensure that you can fully recover afterward. Learn the biggest reasons why you should have a home inventory list, plus tips on how to begin creating one, with help from ServiceMaster Restore®.
Top reasons to have a household inventory list
Unless you’re properly prepared, dealing with the aftermath of an emergency can be costly. Here are a few reasons to keep an updated, detailed household inventory list:
1. Insurance claim reimbursement
Remembering the details of all of the belongings you’ve accumulated throughout the years can be difficult, especially if you're in the middle of a devastating event. Without an accurate description of each valuable item, your insurance company may not be able to compensate you for your losses. Additionally, a detailed list could help you determine how much insurance coverage you need to ensure you have adequate coverage before the worst happens.
2. Provides peace of mind
After a disaster, you’ll want to have as much peace of mind as possible. Your efforts should be focused on getting life back to normal quickly. An inventory list of your belongings could significantly help to minimize your stress during an already difficult situation.
3. Comes in handy for several situations
An inventory list may be helpful in a variety of situations, including moving, filing taxes or planning your estate. It can also be extremely beneficial if you ever need to file an insurance claim due to theft, damage or disaster, as your list will already include every important item you owned along with its estimated value.
4. Aids the recovery process
Sometimes, following a disaster, people may qualify for disaster assistance or tax breaks. An inventory list can help determine if you qualify for these, as it can easily substantiate your financial losses.
How to create a home inventory list
A household inventory list should include a detailed account of everything in your home, from the basement to the attic. Anything you’ve purchased should be included on the list. Developing a comprehensive inventory list might take some time and effort. However, the more precise you are, the more useful it can be later on. Here are some tips to help you build a home inventory list:
- Take all items inside and outside of your home into account
- Walk through the home and write down each item's age, make, model, serial number and estimated value
- Take photos or videos of your items to include with your written list
- Keep receipts, purchase contracts and appraisals with your inventory list
- Consider using an app or a document within a cloud-based system to store your inventory list
- Make copies of your inventory list and back it up online or on an external drive
- Keep your list updated as you purchase new items or get rid of old ones
- Check your insurance coverage for high-price items
Having a household inventory checklist helps prepare you for the worst. That way, if the unexpected does happen, you'll be ready to react to and recover from damages. While you work to get your household items back, let the professionals at ServiceMaster Restore help you rebuild and get life back to normal after you experience weather damage from a range of disasters. Learn more about our fire and smoke damage removal services and water damage services to find out how we act fast to restore your home back to pre-loss conditions.