Getting insurance on your home is one thing. Getting insurance for all the things you treasure inside it can be another. Most home insurance plans will not cover all the items you have in your home, which is why getting decent home and contents insurance can be of significance to you and your family.
Also, remember that preserving your home possessions with simple, eco-friendly methods and smart green technology can further boost their value, as people begin to show more preference for things with sustainable features. It certainly puts you a step ahead for the future, whether you intend to sell or keep as an antique in the future.
“I don’t have anything worth a darn…”
Many people do a quick glance around their house and think to themselves, “I really don’t have anything worth insuring.” Maybe you feel the same way, that your items don’t hold much monetary value. However, upon a closer look, you’ll see the numbers begin to add up.
How much did it cost to buy all the clothes in your closet? To furnish your living room, your bedroom, and other parts of your home? To get that flat screen TV? That brand-new phone? Those kitchen appliances? All these things can be protected.
Of course, you can’t just slap a random number onto your home’s contents. You need to go through and come up with realistic market prices for all the items you own. Unfortunately, sentimental value isn’t insurable, but you probably have plenty of items with a face value that will add up when you begin listing them.
You can make this job a bit easier by using a home inventory app or joining a home inventory website. These apps allow you to quickly and easily take pictures of your most prized possessions, add a value, add serial numbers where applicable, and even attach receipts to prove how much you paid. These records can be important should you ever need to make a claim on your home and contents policy.
What to Include
The real question should be, what shouldn’t you include? Basically, anything worth more than $100 should get its own line in your inventory list.
Furniture, including lamps, cabinets, sideboards and bookcases, as well as sofas and chairs; artworks and antiques; electronics, such as your TV and laptop; all cooking equipment, such as the oven, microwave, kettle and toaster; the fridge and freezer; kitchenware, such as pots and pans; freestanding appliances, such as washing machines, tumble dryers and dishwashers; bedroom furniture and linen; cutlery and crockery; books; clothes and shoes; children’s toy; jewelry and similar items; cosmetics and toiletries; garden furniture and equipment–all of those things need to be accounted for.
You should even estimate the cost to replace gifts and items you have inherited.
It’s important that you go through item by item and add the price you paid for each item in your home. If you don’t remember how much you paid or if it’s a collectable, antique, or gift, research it briefly to come up with a fair market price for the item.
Once you have added all your home’s current contents to the inventory, go through and update it every so often as new big-ticket items are added to your home. You’ll also need to account for things that depreciated in value over time, like that old TV that has been replaced with a new one, and things that have gone up in value as well (like your antique wedding ring).
All these items can add up quickly and you’ll likely be surprised by just how much you own. Once you have a number, you need to talk to your insurance company and ensure that you and your possessions are properly covered. It’s worth visiting State Insurance to find out what home and contents insurance they offer. Getting covered might be easier than you think.
Preserving Your Home Contents Value
- Keep it clean
To retain the value of your most prized possessions, it’s important you keep them in pristine as much as possible. But for the best results, go for “green” cleaning products and avoid harsh, toxic products that could end up doing more damage than good. If you must apply cleaning agents to keep your any of your belonging clean, think about natural remedies with lemon for sparkly fresh and clean results.
- Smart technology
Keeping properties in the right temperature is vital to preserve their value in the long run. Smart green technology will help you achieve this goal easily. Installing a smart heater in your home to regulate the heat, especially during the winter, will not only ensure your belongings are working efficiently but also help you decrease energy bills. Remember too that some home contents need proper insulation to improve or preserve their energy efficiency.
- Simple hacks
Don’t save electricity and prolong their life, leave your electronic devices plugged in when not in use or you’re out. Also, make sure your fridge is kept in the shade and away from direct sunlight, so it is not forced to work harder and waste more energy, thereby depreciating in value quickly. Also, instead of the oven, use the microwave more often, as it comparatively uses 50% less energy.
Keep easily movable valuables possessions like laptops, MP3 players, and iPods out of easy reach and sight of passers-by. If possible, install tracking software on them. And don’t forget to take photos and keep a list of all your most important possessions in a safe place, including the brand name, model and current market value.