Odds are good you are asking, “What is a home inventory app and why do I need one?” A home inventory app is an easy way to track the items in your house with photos, values and serial numbers so that you have proof of your belongings in case of fire or theft and so that you know you have the right level of coverage for your home or apartment.
The best home inventory apps allow you to document all of your items complete with multiple photos and to store the important information about your gadgets, electronics, jewelry and keepsakes.
After you experience a loss due to theft or fire, you will need to file a claim for coverage and you will need to be able to give a detailed listing of what was lost and in some cases this includes the serial number and other important information.
Using a home inventory app, you can track what items belong in each room so that you can walk through and figure out what is missing, including smaller items like jewelry or other keepsakes. The more information you have to provide to the insurance company, the easier it will be for your claim to be handled appropriately.
When you track the home inventory using an app on your smartphone or tablet, you can also add the value of items and then double-check your coverage with your policy and agent so there are no surprises when you need coverage.
Most home inventory apps start with photos and data, but you can jump-start this process with a video of everything in your house including close-ups of expensive items and any identifying information. You can use your iPhone, Android or iPad to record this video right now so that you have something, and then when you have more time you can add rooms to your home inventory app one at a time.
After you set up a home inventory, you should use your phone to set a recurring appointment to update it three to four times a year, including after Christmas or birthdays where you might get something new and valuable. If you are like us, you might buy one new HDTV in 2015 and change the position of every TV in the house as you rotate the older sets to other rooms.
Best Home Inventory Apps
The best home inventory apps track your belongings by room and include the option for many photos and for the value of items. Although some of these are from insurance companies, you don’t need to use that specific company to use that app.
Here are the best home inventory apps that you can use to track your valuables and back them up to the cloud so that even if you lose your phone and computer in a fire or theft you have the information available.
Allstate Digital Locker
You don’t need to be an Allstate customer to use the Digital Locker as your home inventory app of choice. This will walk you through creating rooms and starting a home inventory using your iPhone or Android device. You can add many photos so that you get everything you need for each room and every item.
As you enter information, you will also add the value of items and then at the end you can see the total value of your home items. You can take this to your insurance agent to make sure you have the right coverage. There is a search option that can help you find items later in case you need to file a claim or change an item.
Make sure you use the option to back up your home inventory to the cloud or at least export to PDF and save a copy online or with your insurance agent.
Know Your Stuff
Know Your Stuff is a home inventory app from the Insurance Information Institute. the app may not look as exciting as the Digital Locker, but it will help you create a home inventory with photos, values and the important details.
The app includes free online storage so that you can always access your home inventory from any internet connected device. With this home inventory app you can sort your belongings by room or by category to see what is listed when you need to update your inventory or if you need to use it after a loss.