Since I have lived in Florida my entire life, I have seen my share of hurricanes blow by. I have been lucky (and far enough inland) that my property never suffered any devastating damage, but we all know that it can happen. Hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes are just among the few forces of nature that can leave a family homeless in a matter of minutes. We all may think, or at least hope, that it won't happen to us, but if it does, are you prepared?
Insurance isn't the most exciting thing to talk about, but it is very important. If you own a home, then you have property insurance that will cover damage to your home in the event of a disaster. But what about what is inside of your home? I know that our insurance policy has a section that covers the contents inside our home, and we had to set a value for those contents. Brian and I were just recently discussing the fact that since we have accumulated so much "stuff" over the years, that we should really go back and re-evaluate that section of our policy to see if we are adequately insured.
One of the best ways to make sure belongings are fully protected is to document them through a home inventory. A home inventory basically involves documenting the "stuff" in your home to ensure all your favorite things are covered in case of a severe storm or other emergency.
Here are some tips from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) on how to create a home inventory:
- Group your possessions into logical categories, i.e., by hobby, by room in your home, etc.
- Your list should include celebration purchases like jewelry and art, as well as everyday leisure items such as televisions and guitars.
- Don't forget items you use rarely such as holiday decorations, sports equipment, tools, etc.
- Pull together copies of original sales receipts and/or appraisal documents. Also note model and serial numbers.
- Carefully photograph or videotape each item and document a brief description, including age, purchase price and estimated current value.
- Store your home inventory and related documents in a safe, easily accessible place online, on your computer or in a fire-proof box or safe deposit box. Consider sharing a copy with friends, relatives and your insurance provider.
Brian and I decided that this app would be a great way to get us started on our home inventory so that we can evaluate our insurance coverage to see if we had enough. The app was easy to download, and super easy to use. You simply photograph your possessions and enter the important information about them.
Once you have everything entered, you can export the file to save on your computer, email, or even print out a spreadsheet to keep in a safe place.
I am not a big app person and I generally don't download apps to my phone, but this is one app I have definitely found useful, and I highly recommend that you check it out. Whether you are a homeowner or a renter, the myHOME Scr.APP.book app will get you on track to protecting your "stuff".
For more home insurance information from NAIC, visit home.insureuonline.org.
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Disclosure: All opinions are my own. I received a promotional item in exchange for this post. A big Thank You to NAIC for providing the giveaway prize!