This Critical Precaution Could Save Your Property Damage Claim
Have you taken a home inventory? If not, you’re not alone. According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, only about a third of U.S. homeowners have taken this critical precaution. Without one, if you ever have to file a property damage claim in the event of a disaster, you could be looking at thousands of dollars of lost compensation.
Insurers are less likely to cover belongings that you do not have a record of, so it’s in your best interest to take inventory of all your possessions sooner rather than later. Not sure where to begin? These tips will help you get started.
Decide How You Will Keep the Inventory
You could opt to keep your inventory using pen and paper, but you have other options that are more convenient and safer. For instance, an excel spreadsheet is an easy way to organize your possessions by category, size, purchase price, value, and date of purchase. Your insurance provider may also have a printable checklist to help you cover all your bases. Once you have taken and recorded your inventory, be sure to store it in a safe place. It’s smart to keep a hard and electronic copy in case something happens to one or the other and you have to file a property damage claim.
Break the Task into Smaller Pieces
Depending on how much stuff you have, taking an inventory can be daunting. To make the process more manageable, break up the task. Start in a single room, moving from one corner to the other so that you don’t miss anything. When you need a break, record where you left off so that you can start there the next time you begin.
Compile the Receipts
Receipts are important for determining how much an item is worth. You should also document any serial or model numbers. For paper receipts, it’s a good idea to make electronic copies and store them with your inventory.
Take Photographs or Video
Another way to document your belongings is to take a tour of your home, photographing or video recording your possessions along the way. Many people choose to take a video inventory because it is more convenient than writing down all the details. If you go the video route, be sure to mention the price you paid for each item as well as the current value so that you can include these details in a property damage claim.
Update Your Inventory
A home inventory is never really complete. When you make any big purchases, be sure to update your inventory. It helps to do so as soon as possible so that you can document the item and file the receipt before you lose it.
Revisit Your Policy’s Coverage
In addition to creating a home inventory, it’s smart to revisit your insurance policy to make sure that you have enough coverage. Without the right coverage, your inventory won’t do much good.
Need Help Getting Compensation for Your Property Damage Claim?
We will work hard to get you the compensation you deserve. Get in touch with Quintana Law today to set up a meeting so we can discuss your needs.