Taking Insurance Policy Inventory

You have been diligent to obtain the proper insurance coverage for you and your family. Now that the necessary coverage is in place to meet your needs, be sure you have documentation prepared if you need to make a claim with your insurance provider.

Insurance companies can require you to provide an inventory of your lost, stolen, or damaged items before paying on a claim. If you don’t have an accurate inventory, it could reduce the amount of money that the insurance company pays out to you.

Make sure you won’t be missing out on coverage when the time comes. Consider these important tips:

  1. Home inventory basics. This list should include any item in your home that you would want or need replaced. Photos can be very helpful for documenting these possessions.
  2. Handwritten list. Sometimes it can be as easy as simply writing down your possessions. You can use pen and paper to make the list and keep an ongoing tally of your belongings filed with your insurance policy. To avoid hassles, document one room at a time and be careful to keep track as you move to other areas of the house.
  3. Video list. Don’t want to write things out by hand? You can make a video of all of the items in your home. Store it in a safe place. Be sure in the video to include descriptions and values of the possessions.
  4. Create a spreadsheet list. To save time, you can make an online spreadsheet list. It should include entries for prices, and you can even attach photos.
  5. Use an app with your smartphone. There really is an app for everything these days! You can use online or mobile apps to help you build an inventory list. Many of these apps offer step by step guidance and suggestions to help you keep accurate inventory of your belongings.

Your insurance inventory is an important part of your financial paperwork. You may want to make several copies of the inventory and store them in safe places to ensure this important information will be available if you should ever need it for an insurance claim. Build a personal inventory review into your annual schedule. You should be updating your inventory list and descriptions at least once a year to ensure everything is accurate.

  • Remember, a clear, concise, and detailed personal inventory list can save you considerable time, headaches, and money.

Take Action: print out this PDF reference sheet and file it with your policies. Set a recurring task on your calendar to update your personal inventory lists.