NORTHBROOK, Ill., March 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Getting organized is one of the most common New Year's resolutions and, for those getting a late start, spring cleaning is a great opportunity for redemption. For a first step that pays dividends down the road, Allstate recommends creating a home inventory. It's one of the most important things you can do to get organized and, in addition to having proper homeowners' or renters' insurance coverage, protect your possessions.
In the blink of an eye, your home and all of your belongings could disappear. Do you know what you have? Could you list and describe your possessions so they could be replaced?
"Disaster or theft can strike at any time," said Paul Tracey, director for Allstate. "An accurate and up-to-date home inventory can help make the recovery process easier on you and your family."
Tools, such as the Allstate® Digital Locker™ application for iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad, can help you check off each of these recommended steps in the home inventory process:
- Categorize your list. Organize your catalog of personal property by room, category or in item lists to make your list more manageable and help make sure your list is inclusive of all your important items.
- Include photos and videos of your items. Whenever possible, make sure your home inventory list includes photographs or video of your belongings. Take periodic videos of each room in your house, and focus on individual items in each room. Take additional photos or video of smaller items like jewelry, silver and related valuables or keepsakes.
- Attribute notes, cost and quantity to each item. It's helpful if you can include make, model, serial numbers, receipts, cost, and date of purchase for all items in your home inventory.
- Secure your information. Whether you store your information on paper or electronically, make sure your information is locked away with a key or password. You wouldn't want a complete list of valuable items in your home to fall into the wrong hands.
- Store your home inventory in a smart place. Wherever you store your home inventory list, it's best that the location is far enough away from your home that it won't be lost in the same event that may destroy your house, yet close enough that it's easily accessible in a time of need. Consider storing in a safe deposit box, your workplace or with a friend or relative.
- Include your insurance and agency information for quick reference. Particularly after experiencing a loss, you may have a hard time finding the information you need about your insurance policy and to contact your agency as quickly as you'd like. Including this with your list will help to make sure you have everything you need, when you need it.
- Update after a significant purchase or gift. While you should be updating your home inventory periodically, make a special effort to do so after any major purchase, holidays or birthdays.
The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nation's largest publicly held personal lines insurer. Widely known through the "You're In Good Hands With Allstate®" slogan, Allstate is reinventing protection and retirement to help nearly 16 million households insure what they have today and better prepare for tomorrow. Consumers access Allstate insurance products (auto, home, life and retirement) and services through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, and Allstate exclusive financial representatives in the U.S. and Canada, as well as via www.allstate.com and 1-800 Allstate®.