What kind of appliances do you have in your kitchen?
What size is your TV and when did you purchase it?
What kind and model of computer do you have?
These questions are relatively easy for most people to answer under normal circumstances. Let’s pretend that you just got home from work and found that none of your appliances work. TV, fridge, microwave, and even your laptop won’t turn on. It’s been storming for three days, and the lightning was crazy. Chances are lightning struck and caused a power surge, which traveled through your electrical wiring and ruined everything that was plugged in. It’s not a good day for you, but you have insurance, so all is good, right?
Filing a claim is easy – you just give us or the company a call. Next the adjuster comes, and starts asking questions. You feel like you’re getting the third degree, but really they are just trying to figure out what it will take and how to get your belongings replaced. Because you are already emotionally drained from dealing with this today, the list of questions can seem daunting.
How are you supposed to remember exact details about when you got your toaster or coffee maker? Furthermore, they worked, so you saw no need to keep any receipts to refer to. Or, you kept the receipts and since it was two years ago all you have is a blank piece of scratch paper! Additionally, you may forget about the things you don’t use regularly, like that humidifier that is plugged in to the wall but since no one is sick right now hasn’t been turned on in three weeks.
There is an easy and inexpensive way to keep track of all this, which will make your claim experience much easier. We all have or know someone with a smartphone or digital camera. Take 10 minutes several times per year (we recommend once per quarter) and take pictures of your stuff! It is a common misconception that you need to produce a receipt for everything you need replaced in a claim. While you should absolutely keep receipts and documentation for large purchases, simple photos showing details of what you have will be a great help if something happens to you.
We suggest taking pictures of each room of your home from multiple angles. When you get to bedrooms or closets, open them up and take photos of what is inside. I promise your insurance adjuster won’t criticize your organization or neatness! Don’t worry about making the bed, that dust bunny hiding in the corner, or the kids’ toys strewn about the room. Your adjuster will be excited to be able to settle your claim faster and easier.
So now you have dozens of pictures of your stuff – what do you do with them? That’s easy too! Email them to yourself to an email address you have access to from anywhere. Don’t waste your money getting them printed. Just keep them somewhere they can be accessed if needed. Now, if you don’t have the ability to store them in your own email, send them to us! We can keep your photos in your client file. If you aren’t a client of ours, give us the chance to show you what we can offer for your insurance. Then, whether you insure with us or not, we’ll have a file to store your photos!