Cindy Hartman and her husband, Mike, decided to start their own business after experiencing two thefts. Hartman Inventory, LLC™ “secures your material assets by providing documentation for small to medium sized businesses, homeowners and renters.” When you make your move, they think that is the perfect time to do an inventory of your items. Sometimes a moving company will do a pretty good job of taking the inventory, but it is best to do it yourself or hire an expert like Cindy! Their blog is full of stories of people who suffer some sort of loss and why it is so important to have an inventory whether you are moving or not. Do you know everything that is in your house? How many pairs of shoes you have? The serial number on your Plasma TV?
You probably won’t even know it for days, weeks or even months, according to how quickly you unpack. Then how difficult would it be to list what you no longer have? Completely impossible!
If you don’t already have an inventory of your belongings, this is a great time to create this documentation. You’ll have all the appliances and electronics unplugged, so listing the model and serial numbers will be quite easy. Normally, people purge the things that they no longer want or need, so this is another reason to record your home’s contents now – you’ll have cleaned out all your closets and thrown or given away all your unwanted items.
If you’re hiring a moving company, create your inventory prior to the move. Take photos and log the items as you pack them. The photos will prove ownership, in case something is missing, but will also show the condition of your belongings before they were loaded onto the truck. Scratches on tables, broken legs on chairs, a tear in the upholstery or crystal that has been chipped, cracked or broken are all situations that might occur. Be prepared.
If you’re moving yourself, document your items after you’ve unpacked. You will have all the items in the proper rooms (the preferred format when filing an insurance claim) and also no contents will be included that didn’t fit in the new house or apartment.
Moving is a very stressful time, whether you’re going across town or across the country, and accidents and disasters do happen!
A friend told me her neighbor moved and when they arrived at their new house a few states away, she called to ask if their portable basketball goal was still in the driveway. My friend informed her former neighbor that she watched the movers load it onto the truck. Now what? No list, no photos, no basketball goal.
Another instance that supports the need for an inventory prior to moving is a couple who moved from California to Indiana. The moving van was in an accident and all the contents on that truck burned – complete destruction! No photos or a detailed list to help them complete their claim form.
No matter how far you’re moving, or how many items you own, relocation is a perfect time to create your much-needed inventory of the contents of your home.