If you have a safe at home, a safety deposit box, or some other system of storing all your important documents, when is the last time you went through everything to make sure everything is up-to-date and old items purged? Time has a way of slipping past us, and what may seem like a recent review quickly becomes 10 or 15 years since you’ve looked at all the items. We recently went through all our documents and realized we have some things that need updating and other things we no longer even own.
*Special safety tip: Anytime you take photos to post online, make sure what’s in your photo or in the background doesn’t contain any sensitive information. Crop it out or blur it first like the image to the right.
Here are a few tips for keeping your documents secure and your planning organized should you need to quickly access:
- Inventory, video, and/or photos of your personal property. You might think you have a good idea of what you own, but in a crisis situation it’s nearly impossible to recall everything should you be asked to document. If you have these items already documented, it’s time to review and add new items purchased.
- Titles and Deeds to property and vehicles; need to be what you current own.
- Life insurance policies; are they current?
- Investment account documents; are they current?
- Is your will up-to-date? Power of attorney and living will/directive?
- Check your passports. Adult passports need renewal every 10 years; kids 5 years.
- Create a list of where all of these items and spare keys/codes can be found. Give it to one or two people you trust; preferably a sibling, child, parent, or close friend.