A Home Inventory & Your Home Insurance Coverage
Among the most important things your Massachusetts or Connecticut homeowners insurance will cover you for is your personal belongings in your home. This means that everything from your dishes and appliances to your jewelry and electronics will have the coverage you need. If your home was to be broken into or your items were to be stolen, would you be able to replace those items thanks to your homeowners insurance policy limits? While we suggest talking to your agent about just how much coverage you need for your possessions and how much coverage you currently have, there is also something else you can do. When it comes to making sure you have enough CT or MA home coverage, it’s helpful to know just how much you have in your home. This makes making a home inventory a great idea.
Why Should I Have a Home Inventory?
If your home were to be victim of a fire, would you have any proof of that beautiful new 55” TV in your man cave? What about the lovely and quite expensive diamond earrings you recently received for your big anniversary? Having a home inventory can do two things for you: bring your attention to higher priced items that may require extra coverage (potentially the examples above), and help you create a record of everything in your home.
The main reason most people make a home inventory is because of the second reason above; it can create a record of everything you have in your home. This can be extremely helpful for insurance purposes if something like a fire were to happen in your home. The good news is that putting together a home inventory no longer means getting out a piece of paper and pen. You can now take photos with your cell phone or digital camera and even take a video tour of your home. One important thing to remember is that if your home did have a fire, make sure the home inventory isn’t inside. You may want to make more than one copy, keep it in a fireproof box or keep it somewhere not in your home, like a security box.
Having a video or photos of items in your home is a good way to be able to show what you have and what needs to be replaced in the instance of a fire or break-in. It’s helpful for insurance purposes, and for you. If you are victim of a fire or break-in, you’re under a lot of stress. Don’t put more pressure on yourself to remember what you need to replace. When you have a home inventory, it makes the process just a little bit easier.
Part two of what a home inventory can do for you is help bring your attention to things like jewelry that should be scheduled separately on your home insurance. A basic MA or CT homeowner’s insurance policy will give you coverage for a certain amount of personal possessions in your home. You may think the basic insurance coverage is enough, but when you take a closer look at just how much you have in your home and think about how much it is worth you may find yourself wanting to up your coverage.
Other than jewelry, some examples of other items that you may want to schedule are antiques, instruments, and art. Almost anything of high value can be scheduled. You will need a recent appraisal or detailed invoice if it is a newer item. Scheduling an item is essentially listing that specific item on your homeowners insurance with a specific value and paying a premium based on that specific value. This item is no longer part of your personal property coverage after this and is not subject to deductible. This means your personal property coverage can be focused on your more basic items.
What Are Some Items to Look For?
When you are doing a home inventory, aside from looking for high priced items and keeping a solid list of items in your home, there are other things you may want to make note of. First off, items such as smoke detectors, central monitoring for fires, and burglary systems. These items may either be required or make you eligible for a discount, depending on your homeowner’s insurance carrier and policy. Second, you will want to keep your eyes out for any dangerous items. Your insurance company wants to reward you for having a safe home, which is why they will also most likely be able to offer a lower premium for not having things like a pool, a trampoline, a dog, etc. It is important to make your insurance agent aware if you have any of the above items in order to get the most accurate quote for the coverage you need.
How Much Should My Home Insurance Deductible Be?
Once you have done your home inventory and you are ready to sit down and talk with an agent, you may start to wonder if your deductible should be higher or lower. One of the best ways to determine how much your deductible should be is to ask yourself: “How much could I afford to pay out of pocket in the event of an incident?” Your deductible will be the amount of money you pay before your insurance company will pay for a claim. Having a higher deductible can lower your premium, but make sure that you would be able to afford it.
At Encharter Insurance, we don’t just want you to have a home insurance policy we want to help make sure you have the right home insurance policy with all the coverage you need. Talking with your agent, along with having a home inventory can help us do that. While you’re speaking with an agent, ask them about your current coverage limits or the possibility of adding a specialty insurance policy like jewelry insurance. For the best advice on your deductible and limits, come prepared with information about you, your home, and your budget and give our agents a call. Whether you want to update your current homeowners insurance policy or you have questions about how to go about a home inventory, call today at 888.865.1244.Read More