How to Complete A Home Inventory: Preparing For Natural Disasters

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Posted on January 20, 2018

The world is full of opportunities as well as risks. Nobody knows what will take place in the next instance. We all are exposed to various types of dangers every second we spend. In California, there is a risk for hurricanes. If you live in plains, a tornado can hit you. Towards the west Coast, there is a risk of earthquakes and wildfires. Despite all of the risks, we chose to live our lives. The main factors in selecting our place of living are opportunity and availability thinking nowhere is safe on earth.


No matter where you live. It is important to be prepared in the event of a disaster. Although things like heirloom jewellery or family photos cannot be replaced, there are ways of rebuilding your life replacing your lost or destroyed property. This is when a homeowners’ insurance policy becomes extremely handy.  Although you may already own such insurance, if you do not maintain an updated home inventory, it could be almost impossible in the process of home improvement after a disaster.


According to Laurie Marinelli, who is a personal insurance manager at Murphy Insurance Agency in Hudson, MA, “You need to have your belongings to put your life back together. Having a home inventory cuts the time in half in terms of getting the claim to go through.”


Now that we are well into the internet and technology era, preparing a home inventory is extremely easy. Although insurance companies encourage you to maintain paper based records, there is a risk of getting those records destroyed in the event of a disaster. Therefore, it is wise to think of a digital inventory using modern technology.

Using a phone app

There are various apps in the app market to log your home inventory. MyStuff2 and DreamVault are examples of great apps that make the process easy. These apps can back-up the homeowners’ insurance process providing the inventory at the quickest touch of a button.


Create a photo inventory

Every phone comes with a good camera these days. Use your phone to take pictures of all the rooms, and throughout the drawers and closets. Although these photos cannot provide a detailed inventory, they will be a great assist in reviewing your belongings.


Use a spreadsheet

If you do not like to store your details in cloud storage, use MS Excel. You can log the inventory by room, purpose, or function. Make sure to include the value of each item, as well as its age and condition.


Filter your logs

You do not necessarily log everything you see in detail. For an example, do not try to describe every container in detail. Instead you can put all of them into a single category like “Containers”. However, you should make sure what’s inside your closets and drawers is accounted for.


Make an offline copy

Be sure to keep a copy of the inventory offline using a flash drive, DVD, hardcopy or other option. It will be great in the event of a lost or damaged PC or electronic device.


Despite all the above precautions, you should update your inventory at least annually. It will become very handy in the process of home improvement after a disaster.