The importance of knowing what you own after a disaster

With disasters like the Oklahoma tornadoes still fresh, many of us wonder if we would be prepared for such a storm – and the aftermath.

Authorities say taking an inventory of your home could help alleviate some problems caused by a major event.

Would you be able to tell your insurance agent about everything you have, if your home was hit by a tornado, windstorm or fire?

Bobbi Jo James lost possessions during a break-in. She had no receipts or records.

"That's the first thing the insurance company and the police officer asked me – is if I had the serial number to the laptop," James said.

The Oklahoma tornadoes remind us we can quickly lose everything. It helps to make a record.

The simplest way? Take pictures with your phone of everything, including the television, appliances, movies and jewelry.

And like most things – there's an app to help.

The "MyStuff" App for the iPhone costs $4, but a lite version is available for free. Android users will find an app called "My Home Pro," also for $4.

Users can take pictures, then scan barcodes or type in a description.

A free app from Liberty Mutual Insurance, "Home Gallery," also gets strong reviews. You can email photos and descriptions to your email account, then save them permanently. Users do not have to be a Liberty Mutual customer to use the app.

James said without documentation, the reimbursement process was a nightmare for her.

As always, don't waste your money.

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