When preparing for disasters don’t forget about your content inventory list.
Have you made a list of everything you own? Do you even know what you own? Most people think they have a pretty good idea of what they have but believe me when I say that you don’t.
I have had two incidents where I had to write down everything that I own. When I say write everything down, I mean everything. This is from the biggest items of furniture to the smallest items of hairpins.
You are entitled to be compensated for everything you can prove you lost. Did you catch that? You must PROVE what you lost.
My fire disaster!
The first disaster was when my 1450 square foot 8-stall horse barn burned down. No horses were in the barn. One of the stalls had been turned into an office/storage area. I had that area stacked to the top and completely full as I was making over certain areas in my house.
Do you recognize anything below? No, you don’t and neither did I.
It was almost impossible to know what I had.
In a fire, things melt together or turn to ash. Don’t forget about the water. Yes, the water used by the firefighters to put out the fire. That just adds to the mystery of what you thought you had but aren’t quite so sure now since you can’t tell what it is you are looking at.
My flood disaster!
My second disaster came in the form of a flood during Hurricane Harvey. Read about that here… Hurricane Harvey
I have to admit that taking inventory after the flood was easier this time. I could recognize what had been destroyed but still, you have to account for everything and it would have been easier if I had an inventory list already available.
Let’s look at his another way. Imagine that you get four feet of water in your house. What is sitting on your floor and four feet up? You know that all your furniture is on the floor but what is on the floor of your closet? Do you know everything that you have in all your lower cabinets in your kitchen and bathrooms? You should.
It seems very tedious, but it is a must.
Now, imagine you didn’t flood but your whole house burned down. With flooding, you can at least identify most things but when you have a fire, that can be almost impossible.
1. Take pictures of everything you own. Go through each cabinet and all closets and take pictures.
2. Make a list of everything in the pictures. You need to write down and count what you have. Open a drawer and count how many pairs of white socks you have, what brand and when you bought them. Indicate if the items are gifts. Do this for everything.
3. Collect your receipts for all items you have purchased.
The best way to collect all your information is to have your children help. Yes, give them a list and have them write down everything in their room. Now you will have lists organized by each room. Click for your free printable here. Print as many as you need and label each one for each room.
So now you have your list. Now what? You can’t really keep it lying around. Your list could burn up or float away. Scan it to your computer to the cloud or google drive. Have a way to retrieve the list in case your computer gets destroyed as well. Make a copy of your list and give it to a family member. Put it somewhere you can get a copy of the list.
This will save you so much time when you need to get your money for your contents. You want to get every penny possible to replace all your belongings.
Until next time,