Although a list of contents is useful, an effective inventory is more than just this. It should include notes and, where possible, supporting photographs and other documentation. Follow this step-by-step guide on how to create one;
Make sure you’ve got enough seats in the living room round a table for the maximum number of guests you’ve got bedroom space for. You can consider a sofa bed to extend the number of guests who can stay and take on bigger parties. Just make sure your furniture is easy to clean in case of accidents or spillages – removable covers are ideal.
Include coasters to protect tables and keep fixtures and fittings as neutral as possible, so it’s easy to re-paint and replace. Secure larger items of furniture like bookcases to the walls.
Most holidaymakers will expect a television, DVD player, and decent WiFi. It’s also useful to include a Welcome Pack with instructions for using the heating and appliances, waste and recycling, emergency numbers, and local attractions.
Make sure your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors are up to date and working.
Finally, wherever your guest enter a property make sure you’ve got coat hooks, a welcome mat and shoe storage to help encourage guests not to trample mud over your carpets.
It’s important to make it easy for guests to self-cater. Invest in plain crockery and glassware that can be easily replaced when something gets chipped or smashed. Don’t forget the little things – like a tin opener, corkscrew, wooden spoons, sharp knives, and heat mats to protect your surfaces. Create a full list of everything so you can check it off between lets and replace anything that’s missing or broken.
Try and make cleaning as easy as possible with a hoover, mop, dustpan and brush, cloths, and basic cleaning supplies to hand (kept away from the reach of children), plus a decent iron, ironing board, washing basket and clothes horse to dry clothes.
Invest in decent but inexpensive white goods – they will get more wear and tear than in an ordinary home. Make sure everything is PAT (Portable Appliance Testing) tested, and that all your gas appliances are regularly serviced.
Make sure you include non-slip bathmats, and get a limiter set on the temperature of your hot taps.
Provide light towels, as these are easy to launder and bleach if necessary. If you’re by a beach ask guests to bring their own beach towels!
It’s also a good idea to have a basic first aid kit for minor injuries.
Again, invest in light coloured bedding that’s easy to clean, bleach, and swap out if necessary. Fitted sheets are easier to handle and quicker to change for your cleaning service. If you’re using a laundry service, go for button duvets as the plastic poppers will warp in tumble dryers. Make sure you use pillow and mattress protectors.
Include good black-out curtains or blinds, mirrors, lamps, and don’t forget smaller details like a hairdryer and coat hangers. Secure chests of draws and/or wardrobes to the wall.
Consider having twin beds with mattresses that zip together, so you can configure your holiday home differently for different sets of guests.
It might not be possible to run through your inventory between each let, but using it to help you conduct a full inspection should be something you do at least every 3 to 6 months.
For more information on the cover Towergate can provide for your property, visit our holiday home insurance webpage.
James Cooper is a respected industry leader with over 10 years' experience in the home and property insurance sector. He works across a broad range of insurance product and policy development and delivery, including product development; customer sales and marketing; and P&L accountability.
Date: October 07, 2019
Category: Home and Property