Would you rather listen instead? Click here for a the 5-minute audio recording
Have you ever considered what would happen if your house caught on fire, a tornado went through your city, or a hurricane flooded your house? A home inventory video is a video you'll wish you had.
We all have homeowner or renter's insurance, but if we were asked what was in our home, would we remember?
What if you were robbed? Could there be things you don't realize are missing until after filing a claim?
Insurance companies would love for you to have a spreadsheet with everything listed, but let's face it, that's not gonna happen for most people. A home inventory video could be much simpler and a great start.
How to take a Home Inventory video
Once a year, take your phone and record every room in your house. Open the drawers, scan over your jewelry, through your closets, and all of your electronics. You can talk through it and explain what it is, how much it cost (if you remember) or where you bought it. Then head out to your garage or shed if you have one and do the same in there.
This doesn't have to be professional quality. Keep it simple. If you have nothing and you do something, you've already won! Do each room separately to quickly find the video later, unless you have a small home or rooms.
Get up close and personal with serial numbers if they aren't listed on the receipts. For any expensive items and electronics, I snap a photo of the receipt and store it in Evernote in a Receipts folder. I've gone back many times to see how much we paid for something, where we purchased it, or recall a service provider.
This video inventory is helpful if something happens in your home and you must file an insurance report. Most people wouldn't remember everything they had, especially in a stressful situation. Storing this video in the cloud, where no one (hopefully) ever has to see it, will give you peace of mind and speed up the process if you have a reason to file a claim.
Do this once a year between Christmas and New Year's or annually when you renew your insurance policy.
Using a Video Inventory to donate or offload items
When moving an elderly family member into a smaller home or assisted living, sometimes the amount of stuff can be overwhelming. We don't know what to do with it or who might want it. Record a video, store it in the cloud, share with family or friends, and give it a first dibs request to whoever wants that item. I wouldn't go in the weeds with this and record each item. Still, if something stands out, it's an excellent way for people far away to say they would like Grandma's Scrabble game, Grandpa's favorite chair, or that toolkit that could come in handy.
This could also be a good way if you aren't elderly and just downsizing, moving to another country, or going extreme minimalist.
There you have it, the one video that, in hindsight, you may wish you would have spent 5-20 minutes recording one afternoon a year. Create your home inventory video this week!