Make That List…

…no, not another gift list. We’re talking about a list or catalog of your valuables.

It might be tough to think about at this joyous time of year,

but holiday decorations are a fire hazard. According to the National Fire Prevention Association, in 2003-2007, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 250 home structure fires that began with Christmas trees. And although these fires are not common, when they do occur, they are likely to be unusually serious.

So, besides watering your tree frequently, we strongly recommend putting together a catalog of your valuables – just in case. Itemizing valuables isn’t necessarily on the top of anyone’s “To Do” list, but when something unexpected happens, such as a fire, natural disaster or a burglary, you need to have documentation of what you own in order to get properly reimbursed. Determining exactly what to catalog is often the most overwhelming part of putting together a home inventory, since the sheer number of things you own seems insurmountable, or you may think what’s valuable to you may not seem valuable in the eyes of an insurance company. Unfortunately, delaying the project only sets you up for a bigger disaster should something unforeseen happen.

Get started easily with the Valuables.doc. And remember to ditch perfection! Not only is it better to have an incomplete inventory than no inventory at all, but it’s also a fair bet that your inventory will change over time- so a “perfect” list won’t be that way for long. So ditch that devil on your shoulder; don’t let the thought that you must have a totally comprehensive list stop you in your tracks.