Check All Your Boxes with Our Insurance Checklist
We know how life can get, so we totally get how easy it is to forget to update your home insurance policies when things change. But don’t worry! We’ve put together an easy checklist you can use to take inventory of everything you need to make sure you’re covered.
- Update your home inventory list. This is a list you keep of all the items of value in your home. Have you made any important purchases lately? If so, it’s wise to add these new items to a current list. If you don’t have one, make one. It’s simple to create; simply take inventory of the appliances, computers, electronics, housewares, clothing, bicycles and toys, jewelry, and any other valuable objects. This is a list for both you and your insurance carrier. It’s important that your policy stay up-to-date so that your coverage is as accurate as possible. Keeping a good record of all of your belongings will help resolve claims more smoothly. Save your receipts, contracts, and appraisals in a fireproof safe, or digitally online through sites like Dropbox or Google Drive.
- Review your policy limits on possessions. Every insurance policy has an allocated limit when it comes to covering your valuables. Make sure to update this amount if you need to. For instance, policies that cover jewelry will do so up to a limit, such as $5,000. But, if you are newly engaged or received new jewelry over the holiday, you’ll probably want to update your coverage to increase the amount. If you’ve done any upgrades or made any big purchases, be sure to check in with your insurance agent to see if it might be a good time to update your policy. In addition to newer goods, assess the value of older items. If the value of a special insured item has gone down, your policy should also be adjusted accordingly to eliminate coverage you no longer need.
- Stay on top of maintenance to detect issues early. Just as you and your family get routine checkups at the doctor, it’s important you do the same for your home. Getting regular maintenance checks for your heating and cooling, roof, plumbing, and electrical systems can be a lifesaver in troubleshooting an issue before it turns into major damage. Also, pay close attention to your utility bills. Any sudden spikes or plunges can alert you to a bigger problem, such as a water leak. In addition, if you’ve had inclement weather, make sure to file your claims as early as possible if damage is detected.
- Tell your agent about renovations, home improvements, and new security measures. Saving money is always a smart idea. If you have put in a new roof, built an addition to your home, or installed a pool, these major overhauls need to be accounted for. A new roof could save you money on your policy, while more square footage that adds value to your home will probably require increased coverage. When it comes to safety measures, adding a new smoke detector, alarm system, or dead-bolt locks can also save your money on your overall policy, depending on the discounts available to you.
- Bundle up. If you have separate car and home insurance policies, talk to your agent about bundling your insurance policies, as this usually offers attractive discounts. If you bought a boat, RV, ATV or motorcycle, ask about a multi-policy discount.
- Check the landscape. Examine your yard to see that there is no extra brush, and trim your trees to reduce the risk of natural fire catalysts. And any dead trees or bushes should be properly and safely removed to prevent damage from falling.
- Know your policy in and out. It’s important, now that you’ve completed the checklist, to review your policy to know what’s covered and what’s not included. It takes a small amount of time to sit down and think through what’s valuable to you and make sure it is covered in case of any unforeseen circumstances.
At American Modern, we’re always looking out for your best interests, so we’re glad you could take a moment out of your hectic schedule to go through our list and make sure you’ve got coverage that meets all of your needs.
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For informational use only. Not applicable to all situations.