Avon, IN, March 11, 2011 --(PR.com
)-- Home inventory professional Mike Hartman of Hartman Inventory Systems, LLC states that many home owners as well as small business owners are not prepared to complete an accurate, thorough insurance claim. Flooding is occurring in many areas of the country, and people need to be aware of how they can ensure a maximized insurance settlement.
“All too often, people think ‘it won’t happen to me’ - then find that it does, and they have difficulty pulling the information together that the insurance company requires,” Hartman says. “Unfortunately, most don’t realize they will need to list every item damaged or destroyed.”
Hartman offers these tips to know what you own before you need to provide that information:
1. Verify with your insurance agent that you have flood insurance
2. Ensure that you have sufficient coverage
3. Compile an inventory of your belongings - take plenty of photographs and create a written list that consists of manufacturer, model numbers, serial numbers and other identifying information
4. Keep the inventory in a safe location, off site or save it on an online backup service
5. Update your information annually.
If a loss occurs before completing your inventory, take photos before throwing away damaged items. “You can’t replace the photos that are ruined, for example, but you can recover the cost of the photo albums. Every item, no matter how small, can add up to a large sum of money. Taking photos will help you remember and prove ownership when you submit your claim,” he explains.
It is best to be prepared and have an inventory of one’s belongings before there is a need to file a claim. The documentation will be more thorough, and prepared when time constraints, emotion and frustration are not present.