There aren’t many events that are more disturbing or more tragic than a flood or fire in your home.
Your home is a place to raise your family. It’s a place to feel safe and secure. So when an event occurs that takes it all away from you — even temporarily — it’s normal for a feeling of helplessness to overwhelm those in the family.
You need help. You need reassurance. You want everything to be back to normal and you can’t do it alone.
So you turn to your insurance company and your agent you have been paying faithfully for many years. All you want is for your valuable items lost in the disaster to be replaced.
That’s what insurance is for, right?
But then you discover the hassle of proving what you had in the home and the condition of the items. Sure, you may eventually get replacements for all your lost belongings, but it can take a lot of time as you haggle with the insurance adjuster.
How to avoid this
Now is the time to prepare. There are some simple steps you can take to ensure that if the unthinkable does occur — even if it is just your basement flooding from rain waters — you are prepared.
Step 1: Ask your insurance agent if he or she has a worksheet available so you can create an inventory of all your belongings. There are also online sites that have resources to document your belongings.
Step 2: Create the list of all your valuables, even those just valuable to you, and take video or photographs of everything. Be sure to scan all your paper receipts. If you don’t have a scanner, take close-up photographs of your receipts.
Step 3: You need to protect you documentation. Your lists, your photos, your scanned documents… all need to be put in a safe location. Most use the “cloud,” an online file system that can be accessed from any computer. Of course, you have the username and password, so all your data is safe.
Protect yourself. Have the proof you need in the event of a disaster.