Be protected. Avoid nasty and costly landlord/tenant disputes involving damage or missing items with a home inventory.
A clear inventory of all the items you have in your vacation rental property is an essential record for your business. You should have a home inventory securely stored ONLINE, instead of on your PC, which will very likely be lost in a flood, fire or other catastrophe., a copy at your vacation rental, and a copy for your housekeeper.
A property inventory is vital for four reasons:
1) Proving theft If a renter (or a burglar) walks away with your hairdryer or DVD player, your housekeeper will notice.
2) Keeping track of what you have in your home This may sound silly, but it’s easy to forget (especially for owners of multiple properties) whether you have a certain coveted item (waffle iron, crockpot, The Goonies on DVD, etc.)
3) Providing an account for insurance purposes If something were to happen to your vacation home, you’d need an account of everything in your vacation rental.
4) Easing the transition between housekeepers If you’re firing your housekeeper, it’s a good idea to have a record of how many towels, sheet sets, etc. that you’re supposed to have in your home to avoid mix-ups. The inventory will also help your new housekeeper more quickly familiarize herself with your home and its contents.
Once you have completed your home inventory, you will have peace of mind knowing you have taken the best measure for being prepared for a disaster, theft, or any other unpredictable emergency.
Hi Brad - The answer is yes!!! We do an annual inventory. One copy goes to our insurance company, one copy is in our file here and one copy is put into a notebook in our condo unit along with other information for guests to see. (This lets the guests know that we know exactly what's in the unit and it also helps the cleaner everytime she cleans to determine if anything is missing.) We also have photos of everything - and I mean everything! Every drawer, every cupboard, the owners closet - everything! I keep the photos on the computer, a backed up copy on a flash drive and a hard copy in our inventory file. Any time we buy something to add to the inventory or to replace something, I take a photo, place it into the necessary files, print a copy and bam! It's done. Only then does the item(s) get mailed off to the condo or placed into one of our suitcases if we're traveling there. I also keep all receipts of everything bought for replacement value. Our insurance agents love us. People say that videos are easier but for me taking a photo adding or replacing as soon as the item is bought is much easier than taking a video every year (our unit is in Hawaii and we live in Oregon). It just all depends on what is easier for each person. Also, when an item gets damaged, I've got a before and after shot that cannot be disputed.
You're a very wise person, in my opinion, to keep a close computerized inventory listing on your property(ies).
I'm impressed with how organized you are. I need to do an inventory. It makes so much sense, particularly for the cleaners. How would they know if someone packed the iPod dock? They probably wouldn't notice something like that; they do many different properties. It's a great tool for checking damage & loss