Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Household Inventory

A couple days ago I went to the bank to empty out our safe deposit box. (I was moving it to the bank's branch office closer to our house.) I hadn't opened it for a couple years, and I found something I'd completely forgotten about:
I bought this handy dandy "Household Inventory" book a LONG time ago and thought it was a really great thing at the time. It's basically a place to keep track of all your major household belongings in case you ever need a record for insurance purposes. And I was waaaay more organized back then, so it really appealed my obsessive-compulsive side! I think I got it right around the time a friend of mine had a fire at her home, and although it wasn't a major fire, a lot of things were smoke damaged and had to be replaced. I learned through her experience that documenting everything helps immensely when filing an insurance claim. (I think she even had to list the food in her cupboards. The Household Inventory doesn't get that in-depth, but you get the idea!)

Here's a sample of the pages inside:

It has fill-in-the blank charts where you list items in each room of your house, along with serial/model numbers, year purchased, where it was purchased, original price, and any appraisal information. It also has little plastic pockets where you can keep receipts. As you can see, I have crossed out things we no longer own. (Like the 20 year old VCR and answering machine!) What's funny to me is that I can definitely tell from this book that my then-childless self had a LOT of extra time on her hands! I thoroughly noted all our kitchen appliances, including serial & model number for things like our toaster & electric can opener! I guess at the time I didn't realize that those can easily be replaced on Black Friday for about 10 bucks each!

So to bring all of this info into the 21st century, I came up with a spreadsheet which I will (hopefully) update more than once every 15 years, placing a neatly printed copy in my safe deposit box! There's probably a website out there where you could do the same thing, but I'm thinking a copy on my flash drive and a hard copy at the bank is probably cheaper than paying a website to keep track of my things. (And I'm sorry this image is so small and hard to read, just click on it and it will bring up a larger window.) Taaa-Daaa! 

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