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Why Do I Need A Home Inventory?

Photo and list for home inventory


As a Home owner, you have Homeowners Insurance to cover damage to your house, that policy likely includes personal property coverage – in case of a burglary, fire, or some other insured circumstance. Do you have a home inventory of your personal property?


Personal property is different than real property. The claims adjustor will ask you for a home inventory with a list of the things lost.  If you don’t have one, the insurance company will allow you to reconstruct it – but there’s a real possibility you’ll forget some things, maybe a lot of things.  You may not remember some things for months or even years after the claim was settled.


Here’s a good exercise; visualize two rooms in your house – maybe the Kitchen and Living Room. Without being in the rooms, create a list of all the personal items in plain sight and what’s in the closets and cabinets. When you’re done with the list, go back into the rooms, did you miss anything?  You’re probably surprised by how many things didn’t make your list!  Now think about the value of those items, it could be substantial.  This is why a home inventory is so important.

Even though you’re entitled to claim anything you forgot after your claim is settled, who needs the additional stress?  A simple home inventory can easily solve the problem.


When filing a claim, the more “proof” you have to substantiate your claim, the better  for you. Receipts are great but chances are, you may only have them for the big-ticket items. Photographs or video of the different rooms create a great record of the items for  your home inventory.


An itemized list of each room with a description of the content, cost and date of purchase, supported by pictures and a video would be ideal. Home Inventory Template.  This type of documentation will make filing and settling a claim much easier. The more documentation you have, the more likely you are to have a favorable settlement.


The more expensive the item, the better it would be for you to have receipts, serial numbers and photographs. A simple count of some items like clothing will suffice like 4 pairs of jeans, 24 dress shirts, etc. More valuable items of clothing like a cashmere jacket or a silk dress should be listed individually.


You’ll need to continually update the list and photo’s, maybe schedule for the first week of each year so you don’t forget.

When you’re packing to move is the time when you get rid of some things and buy new for your new home.   For sure, you want to complete a home inventory after you’ve moved in and settled into your new space.


Want more tips and an easy template to help you itemize your home inventory? Download our handy  Home Inventory Guide.  An easy way to catalog your own home inventory using a template. You can include pictures and store it in digital format for safe keeping.

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