Dear Preppers and Survivalists,
i ♥ happy!! from NY, NY
You and your family have created a 'Threat Analysis, so you know the threats facing your area, have an idea about their effects, and know some of the common preps, but do you know what you and your family have for your preps?
Just like the threat analysis, conducting an inventory is important, for you and your family's preps. 'Cause, ... If you don't know what you have, you don't know what you need. Plus, you and your family waste limited financial resources buying unnecessary duplicates.
Needless to say, there are a million-gazillion ways of doing an inventory, some organized and some disorganized.
One disorganized method is to sit down and record everything you think you own. Of course, this method doesn't 'prove' that you really have the item. It just lets you 'check the box' on conducting an inventory.
So, ... Let us (you and your family) conduct an organized inventory.
First, who's helping? Spouse, children, other adults?
Either way, give them a room or a category, and a sheet of paper with a writing utensil (pen, pencil, marker).
Next, explain their task!!!
Tell them the "Five Ws" Who, what, where, when and why. Let me explain.
Who: Youngest Daughter
Where: In Her Room
When: For Three Hours
Why" For Insurance Purposes
In other words, "Youngest daughter, you are going to list everything in your room, on the sheets of paper because we need an inventory for insurance reasons, and I want it done in three hours. Hooah?"
Of course, your youngest daughter is well versed in military lore, so she will reply back "Hooah, Mommy!!!" in response to your question, if she understands the task ; - )
Of course, an older teen or young adult may be given a category like "Water" to inventory.
So, ... they will move throughout the house, recording everything dealing with their assigned category.
Sample: Inventory Sheet for ‘Water’
But, But, But
You say, "My partner and I have four children, a home, two outbuildings, and a 20X20 rental storage locker.
Then, ... You might need to have a sheet like this one that lists people and their specific items, like clothing.
Sample: Inventory Sheet for ‘Clothes’
Once your family is finished, you and your partner and responsible children will need to organize these lists. You can do this a ... million-gazillion ways ; - )
Someone can enter the items into an electronic spreadsheet that will allow easy updating. You can hand print the items in a spiral bound notebook, or ... however you think will work for you and your family.
One way, that I like, is to place similar items on the same sheet of paper. This will allow someone to easily answer questions, like 'How much water (food, ammunition, medical supplies, and ...) do we have?'
Another, similar, method is to list items by owner, so you and your partner know 'What does so and so have?" This way allows someone to track how many shirts, pants, socks, underwear, and ... a specific person has available to wear.
The last method, I will mention, is to list the items by location, so you have an inventory for the storage unit, the garage, the basement, and any other location.
Needless to say, you and your family might be getting ready for some unlikely event, like the financial collapse of these United States or the World (like that is likely to happen ; - ), but the inventory will also help for more likely events, such as a house fire, burglary, or other mundane event.
That's right, more likely then not, the insurance company is going to want an inventory for your family's insurance claim after the tornado, hurricane, flood, house fire, earthquake, looting, break-in, and ..., before they reimburse your family for the property loss.