How Do I Calculate the Replacement Cost of Belongings in My Home?

How Do I Calculate the Replacement Cost of Belongings in My Home?

How Do I Calculate the Replacement Cost of Belongings in My Home?

Here are some pointers:

  • Make a written inventory of the items in each room of your house.
  • Include everything that’s not permanently installed or attached to utilities.
  • Estimate the cost to replace these belongings with new goods at today’s prices.
  • Add photos, video and receipts when possible — and keep your inventory in a secure place.

Question We have a pretty big family, and our house is full of everything from computers to stuffed animals. Some of our furniture is new, and some of it has been around for years. I don’t even know where to start when it comes to figuring out what it’s all worth. What’s the best approach to take?

Farmers Insurance® agent Theresa Simes of Fountain Valley California, provides suggestions on how to determine the replacement cost of what’s inside your home.

Answer Your personal property includes everything inside the home that is not permanently installed. Clothing, furniture, electronics and miscellaneous household items are considered personal property. Appliances and fixtures attached to utilities are not.

Now that you know what to look for, I would suggest that you go through your house room by room and create a home inventory. You want to note everything, from big-ticket items like TVs and sofas to shoes in the closet and dishes in the cabinet. Do you have any sports equipment, area rugs or collectibles? Be careful not to overlook anything. Some customers take photos and video to supplement their written inventory.

Think about how much it would cost to replace these things at today’s prices. You may have gotten a great deal on your bedroom set at an estate sale, but what’s the cost of going out and buying a comparable one today? You’ll likely find that the cost of replacing your belongings is usually more than their actual cash value. 

Farmers® home policies start out with contents coverage equal to 40 percent of your home’s value. That’s $160,000 in coverage on a $400,000 home. This amount works for some customers — but others could want up to 75 percent or more. It all depends on how much you could lose in a fire, natural disaster or other covered event. Don’t guess at this amount — take a detailed home inventory and keep it in a safe place.

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