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Create Your Home Inventory in Minutes with Neat

July 31st, 2013

Last week I discussed some of the top documents you should have digitized in the event of a disaster or emergency. To offer more tips and guidance for making sure your home is prepared, Laura and Janet Greenwald, co-creators of groundbreaking disaster preparedness system “Ready In 10,” will take you through how to create a comprehensive Home Inventory.

 

Until Next Time…Keep it Neat!

-Kevin

 

By Laura and Janet Greenwald

A Home Inventory is something no home should be without.

Why?   Because, if something happens to your big screen TV or your favorite oriental rug, your insurance company isn’t just going to hand over a replacement check.  First they’ll make you provide proof of ownership, insurance and proof that it was in reasonably good condition, before it met its untimely end.

The good news is that creating a home inventory couldn’t be easier – especially if you have a NeatDesk or NeatReceipts.

So grab a notebook, a digital camera and open up Neat’s Digital Filing System software on your computer.  Ready?  Let’s get started!

First, you’re going to need a home inventory form.  You can either create your own using a piece of notebook paper or a blank Word document, or you can download and print a Home Inventory Form absolutely free from our web site, http://getyourstufftogether.com/neatdownload.htm.

If you’re creating your own form, write the name of the room you’re inventorying first. We suggest the living room, since it’s usually home to the most expensive electronics and furniture.  Below that, create five headings:  Name of Item, Manufacturer, Model/Serial Number, Date of Purchase and Warranty Number.

Beginning with the living room, walk through and record the items in each room.   You want to list every item that is:

  • Separately insured or under warranty
  • That would be expensive to repair or hard to replace
  • Valuable
  • Or that has sentimental value to you

Jot down the name of each item, and then fill in the rest of the information about it, under each heading.

When you’re finished with the room, take a photo of each item, then take a few photos of the room itself to show the condition of the walls, floor and the configuration of the furniture.   This way, if the room or any of the items in it are damaged accidently or in a fire or disaster, you’ll have proof of the original condition to send to the claims adjuster.

Continue doing this for each room in your home, the exterior of the house and all the vehicles that you own.

Now take your list to the place where you keep your important documents and receipts and gather all of the warranties, original purchase receipts, protection plans, insurance policies and certificates of insurance, along with the business cards of your insurance agents for all of the items on your Home Inventory.

Here’s where it gets fun.  Turn on your NeatDesk or NeatReceipts and open up the Digital Filing System software on your computer to access your Neat library of file folders.

Right click on the main folder and create a new folder called Home Inventory.  If you have a lot of documentation to scan you can always create folders for each of your rooms inside the main Home Inventory folder, but for most people one will do nicely.

Scan the home inventory form pages, along with all of the receipts, warranties and documentation and save them to the Home Inventory folder.

I bet you didn’t know that you can insert photos into your Neat Digital Filing System did you?  It’s easy. Just upload the pictures from your digital camera to your computer desktop.  Go back to the Home Inventory folder and click on Insert, Photo, then Browse to the folder containing the photos you took and insert them right into your Home Inventory folder.  If you have any photo prints of your items, simply scan them with NeatDesk and place them in the folder.

Once you’re done, Neat will automatically sync your entire Digital Filing System, including Home Inventory folder to NeatCloud.  That way you’ll have your Home Inventory right at your fingertips, no matter where you are, the instant you need it, even if you’re miles away from home. Now that’s what we call having your stuff together!

 

Mother and daughter screenwriting team Laura and Janet Greenwald are creators of the groundbreaking disaster preparedness system “Ready In 10”. Their latest book, “Get Your Stuff Together” is helping families nationwide keep the things that are important to them, safe and secure, quickly and easily. You can find them on Twitter @readyin10net or at www.getyourstufftogether.com

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Neat Keeps Vital Documents Safe in an Emergency

July 26th, 2013

According to the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC), 2012 was the second most costly year for destruction caused by weather and climate disasters since 1980, with 11 events totaling more than $110 billion in damages.  With recent forest fires raging across the west and the east coast’s hurricane season already underway, being prepared in case disaster strikes is vital.  However, many homeowners don’t think of protecting the important information they’ll need if their homes require major repairs or rebuilding in the aftermath of a disaster.

After Superstorm Sandy last year, many of my friends and family here on the east coast dealt with property damages due to downed trees, flooding and strong winds.  Having immediate access to documents like home insurance policies or insurance agent contact information was essential.  By digitizing and backing up my important documents in Neat’s Digital Filing System, I feel secure knowing I can access this information in the event of an emergency.  Here are my suggestions for documents to secure so you can be prepared in case the worst happens:

  • Archive home and vehicle insurance policies, deeds, titles and insurance agent contact information. By having this information available, you can more easily share the information and file claims with your insurance company, home repair service, or FEMA.
  • Protect medical records, prescriptions and health insurance information in the event you and your family members must evacuate your home during an emergency. You can forgo any worries associated with making sure prescriptions can be filled and important records can be accessed.
  • Guard your tax information and financial documents to ensure critical information for your bank account or investments is never lost.

No one wants to think about the damages or losses that could come when a disaster strikes, but preparing your vital information ahead of time will provide peace of mind.

Until Next Time…Keep it Neat!

-Kevin

 

NeatCloud’s Mobile App Makes Managing Finances a Breeze

July 24th, 2013

Now more than ever before, people rely on their smartphones to do everything from scheduling dinner reservations, to getting driving directions, and responding to email. Here at Neat, we knew it was crucial to provide a comprehensive tool that allowed people to manage their important information from the devices that constantly grace their pockets and purses.

With NeatCloud’s mobile app users can capture, access, and organize information, create expense reports, and share important information at any time, from anywhere. Below we’ve included just a few examples of how you can better manage your financial information with NeatCloud’s mobile app.

Capture Financial Information Accurately

Scan receipts and invoices on-the-go using your iOS or Android mobile device and let Neat’s OCR and parsing technology do the rest. Key information such as date, total, tax and more are automatically extracted and placed into the correct data field. When coupled with NeatVerify, our mobile data verification service, you can ensure 100% accuracy for all mobile scans of receipts, even if they are faded or include handwritten totals.

Instantly Create Expense Reports

No more digging through wallets, purses, and pockets to find receipts to tally up your expenses. Create comprehensive, professional expense reports in an instant by selecting individual receipts or a folder of financial files on your mobile device. All expense reports include a summary of all expenses, a breakdown of each expense by vendor, date, and category, as well as an image of each receipt, bill, or invoice.

Prep for Tax Season

Relieve the stress associated with prepping for tax season by staying on top of your deductions all year long. When scanning receipts, bills, or invoices you can easily assign deduction categories (medical/dental, travel, etc.) and then create folders to keep track of information by year. Additionally you can share important tax information and expense reports directly with your accountant via email. The accountant or shared user then has the ability to comment back and forth on the information to make sure taxes are filed properly.

If you’re interested in learning more ways that you can take advantage of NeatCloud’s mobile app, check out our latest video here.

 

Until next time…keep it Neat!

-Kevin

 

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Begin Your Spring Cleaning By Removing the Paper Pile in Your Office

April 7th, 2011

With spring already here, it’s time to start cleaning and not just at home, but at the office too. A desk is where the average person spends most of their time; so, why not make it a clean and well-organized space?

Today, we will look at a specific clutter that can pile up on a desk: paper. If you’re looking around your workspace and think it’s time to organize your paper, lucky for you Neat is here to help. Here’s a few ways to get your office organized this spring:

• Revolutionize the Expense Report: Instead of keeping receipts stuffed in a desk drawer-organize business finances by scanning receipts and exporting the information to an Excel spreadsheet in order to create a budget or an expense report.

• Continually Update the Contact Database: After long and tiresome business trips, business cards are usually left stacked on a desk. Manage important professional contacts by scanning business cards and syncing the information to Outlook and smart phones.

• Get Rid of Paper Documents: A typical desk is covered in manila folders, mail envelopes, old reports, and client documents. Keep track of important documents by scanning and converting to searchable digital formats.

Neat can help you transform that paper pile-up into an organized “digital filing cabinet.” With a digital version of all your important information, you can get rid of paper clutter just in time for summer, and have peace of mind that all of your data is backed up and easy to find on your computer.

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