Congrats on taking the first step in protecting your assets with your new insurance (renters, condo or home policy). One of the policy’s main benefits is to provide coverage for your Personal Property (your stuff – i.e. furniture, electronics, clothes, kitchen/bath supplies, sporting goods, etc.…most items you would take with you when you moved). Keep in mind, most policies offer limits on coverages for certain items (i.e. jewelry, art, collections, etc.).
The next step is to document your Personal Property (clothes, electronics, furniture, kitchen gear, sporting goods, specialty equipment, etc.) and receipts. There are many different ways to create a home inventory (digital photos, videotape, type or hand written list, etc.). The more data/backup info (item type, date purchased, purchase price, receipts, etc.) you have the better.
A claim can be a very emotional, stressful and complex experience. Attempting to remember all your personal possessions at the time of a claim can be an impossible task. When you are preventative and have a catalog of your items before anything happens, it provides peace of mind and can be a huge relief (if a claim occurs). Preparing yourself with a documented catalog of your Personal Property can increase the chances your claim will be handled in a quicker, fair and more organized manner. If you take the time to be proactive and itemize your possessions, it is one less thing to do during this difficult time.
I suggest you keep this back up inventory in a safe place both on and off-premises. This way, if your home burns down and/or your possessions are stolen or damaged (due to a covered peril), you’ll have proof of your personal property in a secondary location.
Another option is to use the following link to help catalog your Personal Property; it’s a free on-line software (offered by the Insurance Information Institute) to catalog your possessions. www.knowyourstuff.org
Take the time to be a historian and create your inventory. You’ll be thankful you did!