This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Key to Quick Insurance Claim Turnaround? Doing a Home Inventory

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- You can get your home insurance claims processed up to 100% faster by making one simple household financial move: doing a home inventory.

According to the Hanover Insurance Group, about 80% of insurance industry professionals say claims are processed 50% to 100% faster if you've done one.

That could mean the difference between getting a claims check in several days as opposed to several weeks.

"You never know when a disaster will strike -- whether it's theft, damage or weather -- but when it does, the priority is to restore your life,” says Mark Welzenbach, chief claims officer at Hanover. “A home inventory documents your contents and the value of your possessions to help expedite the claims process.”

A good home inventory starts with two key steps: establishing proof of ownership and including accurate descriptions of your household items.

For example, on big-ticket items such as hot tubs or big-screen televisions, record the serial numbers and the make and model of the item. Photos are a good idea, as are including any professional appraisals on such things as jewelry and paintings.

Record your appraisal on a computer with a backup system, a mobile phone or computer tablet app -- or on paper, as long as it is protected in some way, such as locked in a safe.

Whatever you do, make sure you start and finish that inventory and keep it updated.

"Choose whatever inventory process helps you get the initial work done and, importantly ... update regularly," Welzenbach says. "If you suffer a loss -- whether a lost piece of jewelry or a fire -- you'll be glad you're prepared."

Welzenbach and Hanover offer some tips on when to update your home inventory:

  • Immediately after a move to a new home.
  • After a remodel, especially if furniture or electronics are upgraded as well.
  • During the holidays when "celebration" purchases of high value are made or big gifts are received.
  • Daylight Savings Time, so it becomes a yearly habit to update your inventory when you change the clocks each spring.

To Welzenbach, it’s all about putting in a little time now for a big return down the road.

"Don't procrastinate and have regrets later," Welzenbach says. "This is a small investment of time that could pay a significant return."


Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $93.74 0.00%
FB $117.58 0.00%
GOOG $693.01 0.00%
TSLA $240.76 0.00%
YHOO $36.60 0.00%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,773.64 -57.12 -0.32%
S&P 500 2,065.30 -10.51 -0.51%
NASDAQ 4,775.3580 -29.9330 -0.62%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs