How to Create a Moving Inventory List (Part 2 of 2)

In our previous blog, we discussed the importance of making a moving inventory list. This blog will provide you with the basics of how to create a moving inventory list.

Before you begin packing, you must stop, look and document. These are the key things that you must do in order to create a moving inventory list. Here are some tips.

Room by room. When making your inventory list, document all items in one room before moving on to the next room. This will provide maximum efficiency and better organization. If you prefer to list items sporadically among rooms, be sure to create separate inventory sheets for each room for good organization.

Document major items first. As you begin your inventory list, be sure to document major items first. These items include furniture pieces, household appliances, large electronic devices, etc. Once you have completed this, you can then proceed with your list by documenting smaller or more insignificant belongings. When writing down all of your belongings, be sure to note any items that will require special handling during the moving process. This will help better prepare your movers for moving day.

When making an inventory list, you do not need to document every single possession you own, like individual books, pieces of clothing, office supplies, and other odds and ends. Instead, your inventory list should include all large, valuable and sentimental items. Also note that your inventory list will become one of your most important possessions during your move, so be sure to keep it in a safe place at all times.

Details. Whether you choose to write everything down on paper or use a spreadsheet program via your computer, you will want to set up an inventory template to make it simple to use and limit confusion. Here are some essential columns to use when creating your template.

Column 1. State the name of your item.

Column 2. Give a description of each item. Make each description as specific as possible, providing information, such as: quantity, material, make, model number and any other distinctive features that may be of use to you or your movers.

Column 3. State the current condition of each individual item – and don’t sugar coat it. Inspect each item and be objective, noting the actual condition of every item. Document any pre-existing damage and include all applicable documentation, like warranties, receipts, certificates, appraisal statements, photos, etc.

Column 4. List the estimated value of each item. This is an important column on your inventory list as it will be used to establish the limit of your movers’ liability for loss or damage of an item.

Column 5. Column 5 should state the designated new location for each item on your list. By listing the specific room or location where each item on your list should go in your new home, your movers will be much more efficient; it will considerably speed up the unpacking process.

Column 6. The final column on your inventory template should be designated for any personal notes you may want to include about each of your items. For example, if you have numbered any boxes or containers, be sure to also note the number of these boxes or containers in this section of your inventory.

Visuals. Along with your written moving inventory list, another way to increase its effectiveness is to include visuals. Adding visuals, like pictures and/or videos of your belongings, will provide proof of their condition and will also better capture distinctive features of each item than written descriptions can. Just remember, visual records of your possessions are meant to accompany your written moving inventory list – not replace it.

Copy, save and backup. Once you have created your moving inventory sheet, be sure it doesn’t get lost or damaged during the chaos of your move. So always save, backup and make copies of your list. Also play it safe by keeping copies of your list in different locations, like in a folder, a filing cabinet, and even in the glove compartment of your car. For those who opt for a digital file, be sure to save your list to a jump drive or store in it in the cloud; you can also email it to yourself.

Another good idea come moving day is to compare your inventory list to the one prepared by your movers. This way you can check to ensure everything is correct.

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