You should take the next opportunity of free time in your life to make a home inventory. A home inventory can come in handy for a variety of reasons, not the least for insurance purposes should something happen to your belongings. A number of different ways to create an effective and comprehensive home inventory exists. The choice you make will depend entirely on the effort you want to put into creating your home inventory.
Written Home Inventory
A written inventory is merely a list of the items that you possess. How detailed a home inventory will depend, once again, on your level of energy. A written home inventory should at the very least include checklist of every single possession you own. A much better written home inventory will include information such as the room in which the possession is located, how much it cost, how much it is insured for, where it was bought, how you came to possess it and what is a fair appraisal of its worth. Check with your insurance company to get a home inventory booklet where you can keep all this vital information. Then place the booklet either in a safe deposit box or a fireproof container kept inside the home.
Video Home Inventory
The video inventory should include a running commentary that includes all the above information. There is an upside and a downside to making a video home inventory. The advantage is that you have a record of exactly what possessions you own. The downside is that you have a record of exactly what possessions you own. A video home inventory precludes the potential for suggesting that your DVD player you lost in the fire was the cream of the crop rather than a Wal-Mart 99 dollar special. If you get my drift.
Photographic Home Inventory
The photographic home inventory can exist on its own or it can be part of a written or videotaped inventory. You definitely want to get some photographic evidence of your most expensive or rare possessions. You should also take photos of the interior design of your house like furniture, trimwork, molding, flooring, wall covering and window treatments. Keep this in mind: insurance companies are a tool of the devil; the more evidence you produce of having lost something worth the payout, the more likely you are to actually get the payout you deserve.
Unless you save the computerized inventory onto a drive that you keep inside a safe deposit box or the fireproof box inside the house, you might want to skip this since it will probably be destroyed along with the computer in case of a disaster. The nice thing about keeping your home inventory on the computer is that it speeds up the process of determining the worth of your possessions.
Inventory List Ideas
The more comprehensive your home inventory list, the better. Here are a few thing you may overlook, but that should definitely be on your home inventory list. Lighting fixtures, small appliances, lawn mower, tools, linens, towels, books, records, toys and yard equipment.