Skip to main content

Preparing for future events, start by taking inventory

 

The Need for a Home Inventory

With the hurricanes, floods and earthquakes happening weekly, I thought it might be a good time to share about how important having an home inventory is for everyone. My sister and I put together a fact sheet on home inventories for our clients about five years ago.  Remind your family and friends so they are prepared if necessary. 


Having  your home contents insured is very important. Having a detailed record of everything that you own is a must. Should you ever need to file a claim; the insurance adjuster will expect you to submit a list of all damaged belongings, complete with purchase dates, purchase prices, brand names, model numbers, receipts and photos. If you can't provide this information, your claim may be denied, and that's not what you've been paying those hefty premiums for! Protect yourself (and your belongings) by completing a full home inventory and updating it annually. 

Having an up-to-date home inventory will help you get your insurance claim settled faster, verify losses for your income tax return and help you purchase the correct amount of insurance. More than half of Americans don't have a home inventory of their possessions. Putting them at risk for inadequate home insurance coverage, should severe weather strike.

Taking Inventory

1. Start by making a list of your possessions, describing each item and noting where you bought it and its make and model. Clip to your list any sales receipts, purchase contracts, and appraisals.

2. For clothing, count the items you own by category pants, coats, shoes, for example - making notes about those that are especially valuable.

3. For major appliances and electronic equipment, record their serial numbers usually found on the back or bottom.

4. If you are just setting up a household, starting an inventory list can be relatively simple. If you've been living in the same house for many years, however, the task of creating a list can be daunting. Still, it's better to have an incomplete inventory than nothing at all. Start with recent purchases and then try to remember what you can about older possessions.

5. Valuable items like jewelry, artwork and collectibles may have increased in value since you received them. Check with your agent to make sure that you have adequate insurance for these items. They may need to be insured separately.

6. Besides the list, you can take pictures of rooms and important individual items. On the back of the photos note what is shown, where you bought each item, and the make. Don't forget things that are in closets or drawers.


7. Walk through your house or apartment videotaping and describing the contents. Or, do the same thing using a tape recorder.

8. Use your PC to make your inventory list. Personal finance software packages often include a homeowner’s room-by-room inventory program.

9. Regardless of how you do it (written list, flash drive, photos, videotape or audio tape), keep your inventory along with receipts in your safe deposit box or at a friend's or relative's home. That way you'll be sure to have something to give your insurance representative if your home is damaged. When you make a significant purchase, add the information to your inventory while the details are fresh in your mind.

Creating Your Inventory

You can list your items by category, or by room. For many items like books, CDs, bed sheets or pots and pans, you can make a general estimate of how many you have. For expensive items, note the make and model, the store where the item was purchased and the approximate date.

Want to learn more? Let us talk

Valerie Bomberger, ABR Michigan Realtor

Mobile /Text (269) 208-4750

Email valeriebomberger@remax.net

 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Understanding Pre-qualification and Pre-approval

  Buyers ask me all the time what the difference is between Pre-qualification and Pre-approval. If you are considering the purchase of a new home or selling your home, you may be concerned with the issue of finance. If you are a buyer obtaining the right mortgage is a key step in the home buying process, but it does not have to be a stress inducing one. Talk to your lender before you make an offer. Most lenders offer pre-qualification, pre-approval, or both to help you know where you stand. Get Prequalified and be up front about the source of your down payment money. A good lender will explain the true costs of borrowing to you so you can comfortably afford the home you want as well as the monthly payments. Sellers should always ask if a buyer that wants to see their house is already pre-qualified. Pre-qualification: Is a preliminary estimate of how much you can afford to pay for a home based on information you provide. Because credit and employment information are not validated fo

Understanding how the down payment for buying a home works

Down Payment 101 A down payment is a very important first step in buying and owning your own home. Having a down payment is a good sign that you’re ready to tackle home ownership and likely be able to handle the monthly expenses that come with home ownership; including the monthly mortgage payments, property taxes and any repairs that come up. Mortgage lenders require a down payment to help offset their risk. The larger the down payment the less they end up losing if they foreclose. If a buyer puts down less than 20% they will have to get private  mortgage insurance (PMI). This insurance repays the lender a portion of the loan if it goes into default. You will need to remember that PMI insurance will increase your monthly mortgage payments. The size of the down payment can affect your interest rate. Most mortgage lenders will offer a lower rate to buyers with larger down payments. The money for a down payment can come from several sources: From your own savings Gifts from f

Why Work with a Real Estate Agent?

  Should I Hire a Buyer's Agent? Yes.     Real estate agent is a professional in a field where most buyers and sellers are novices. This is likely the largest single purchase you will ever make. After all, how often do you drop a quarter of a million dollars or more on a shopping spree? Home buying and selling is full of pitfalls that can be avoided with an agent to provide you with expert assistance, knowledge of the market and negotiation skills. Your agent is the unbiased voice of reason who brings objectivity to the table. An agent helps sellers see past their emotional connection to their home and helps buyers deal with a multiple bid situation. Your agent can recommend a good independent home inspector who can provide a list of repair needs. Then, the agent will help evaluate which repairs are reasonable and which are excessive as you get your home ready to sell. Your agent also has contacts with excellent contractors to make the necessary repairs. Determining t