Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Our Family's Home Inventory App

Since aboutone.com closed down (big tear!), I have been on the hunt for a new home inventory app/software and I finally found one that I'm happy with!!!
What I settled on was the Home Inventory App from Binary Formations, LLC.  I found this in the Apple app store (yes, I'm an Apple junkie) and so far I've been very happy with it.
I really wanted something that was easy to use, could be easily backed up in a few different places and was very organized.  This app definitely fit the bill.

Now this app does cost $29.  Which was a little more than I had wanted to spend but when you take into account that we were paying $7 a month for Aboutone.com so it bscially paid for itself after a few months.

The app is organized by locations (or rooms/spaces) within your house, then by item.  The home page offers a place for information on your house itself like a maintenance schedule and/or its assessment history.



Once you set up all of your locations, then you list out each item in that space.  Each item then has its own little file where you can be as basic or as detailed as you want.



There are spaces for make, model, serial numbers, categories (furniture, jewellery) any collections, condition, purchased from, purchase date, quantity, price, value and any additional tags.  There are places to add any photos of the item, any receipts and any other files like user manuals or anything like that that you want to keep track of.  Also, there is an option to track the warranty information for the item which is awesome.  Aboutone.com had a feture like this where it would remind you before a warranty would run out and this does the same thing.  It will send you a reminder before it expires.



There is also a place to add in any information about any insurance policies you want.  Never a bad idea to have this information in the same place as your inventory.




The last tab is the Reports tab.  This tab gives you a lot of different reports to run on the information you have saved in your account.  As you can see below, there are reports for a fully detailed report on all items, reports of just photos, a moving checklist and even an analysis of warranties.



So we back this inventory up in several different ways.  We do tend to run a little on the paranoid side so I feel better having this backed up in several different places.  The first is the cloud that it automatically backs itself up on.  The second is on the iPhone app that goes with this software.  We also download a PDF copy of the detailed report to my desktop whenever we make a change and this file is then backed up onto my computer's external hard drive with Time Machine and to our Crash Report account which backs up everything on our computer to their cloud.  We also have a printed copy in our fire box in our Important Documents binder.

Now I'm not going to lie, sitting down and filling out all of the information for each of these items was a HUGE pain in the butt but something that had to be done.  I am glad that we had an app that made it so much easier.  I know people that use complicated spreadsheets and have to keep photos and documents in separate folders.  I wanted something where I could just plug in the information and it would generate these reports and basically do as much of the work for me as possible.  I went through our house with my iphone and took photos of all of the larger or more expensive items in each room.  I also set up an "item" under each room that I called "Whole Space Photos" where I took photos of the entire room from different angles, inside each drawer, inside cabinets, and things like that.  I wasn't about to sit and list out every shirt I own so at least this way I had some photos of all the little stuff and could list them out if I had to for a claim.

This app also has a cool feature where it totals up all of the "values" of either all your items in your home or by different categories which is a great tool when working out how much insurance you need to carry.  This way you have a much better idea of how much all your stuff is worth rather that just making an educated guess and either over or under insuring your stuff.

One downside to this app is that you can only edit your inventory from your computer.  You can back everything up on your iPhone through the iPhone app so you are able to view everything from your phone but you cannot make any changes from your iPhone.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with this app.  I do wish I could enter in information from my phone as I walk around the house but thats really the only negative I've been able to find with it so far.

Whatever system you choose to use, please please please have an updated inventory for your household!  It is worth more than its weight in gold when you really need it!


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1 comment:

  1. Welcome to VA. We are so glad you found Home Inventory! Thank you for such an in-depth review. Here is a link to our companion app Home Inventory Remote Entry which allows you to add/edit items from your iPhone/iPad. In offline mode you can add new items from offsite places like a storage shed. Enjoy! https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/home-inventory-remote-entry/id945130848?ls=1&mt=8

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