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Making a home insurance inventory? There’s an app for that

In the wake of a disaster, like a fire, flood or break-in, the home insurance inventory you’ve kept of your valuable possessions can be invaluable in helping you get compensation from your insurer. But keeping a detailed, updated list of all of your belongings — and their serial numbers — is easier said than done. Fortunately, a variety of useful and sometimes free) software packages and apps can simplify the inventory process and help you make claims faster.

‘Know Your Stuff’

The Insurance Information Institute offers home inventory software called Know Your Stuff. It’s free, but, for $9.95 a month you also can get the version of the software tailored to business owners. The app allows you to organize items by room and upload photos and receipts. The business version lets you track office equipment, electronics and other goods so you can substantiate any losses that you incur. All your information is stored remotely so that you can access your inventory from any computer.

‘MyHome Scr.APP.Book’

MyHome Scr.APP.Book is a smartphone app from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners that allows you to organize images, descriptions, barcodes and serial numbers of your possessions by room. The app is free, and it creates a backup file you can email to yourself, in case your phone is one of the items destroyed in a disaster.

Gotta Have It! Software’s ‘Home Inventory’

This app from Gotta Have It! Software can be used on your smartphone or computer. You can include nine high-resolution photos per item and create customized fields that let you enter minute details about your belongings. The inventory is stored remotely, and the program generates printable, full-length reports.

‘What You Own’

What You Own is a free program that organizes your belongings room by room, generates printable reports and lets you export your inventory as a PDF. The program also offers a feature called “Donation Room” that lets you track the value of possessions that you tag for charitable giving, which can come in handy at tax time.

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