One of the arguably most important parts of my 101 in 1001 list was to make a home book that includes all of the important information anyone would need if something happened to me or my husband.
Because it was so daunting and heavy of a task, I put it off for a while, but I finally finished it last week! As soon as I printed it out, I knew it would be a helpful thing for more people to set up, so I wanted to walk you through exactly how to create one of your own.
Why You Need a Home Book
A little more than a year ago now, two different family friends had a loved one pass away suddenly and unexpectedly. It was a big reality check, because I’m the one who manages all of the day-to-day tasks of our house, including paying the bills and seeing where we’re at financially. I was suddenly imagining what would happen if I was gone and Sean had to pick up the pieces without me.
While it’s a tough thing to think about and we never expect it to happen to us, we truly never know. That’s why it’s important to have one resource for all of your information, so if anything happens to you or your loved one, you don’t have to scramble to find out how to pay the mortgage or how much life insurance they had.
What to Include in Your Home Book
Your home book can be as big or as small as you need it to be. These are some ideas, but customize it based on your own personal situation.
- Personal information: phone, email, work contact info, date of birth, place of birth for each person in your household
- Important contacts: human resources, physicians, dentist, pharmacy, neighbors, auto repair, veterinarian
- Bills: rent/mortgage, energy, subscriptions, insurance, loans, utilities
- Financial: bank accounts, credit cards, budget, loans
- Investments: retirement accounts, HSAs, FSAs; include type of investment, name of institution, contact info
- Health: allergies, dietary restrictions, medical treatments / surgeries, medications
- Insurance: car, renters, home owners, life; include policy number, policy holder, policy amount, beneficiaries, and agent contact information
- Vehicles: year, model, make, title number, whose name is on the title
I simply typed up all of this information and printed it out. I put it in a secure location, and told my husband and both sets of parents where to find it in case anyone ever needs it.
Security is very important here, but you also want to make sure it’s easy to update as needed. It’s not going to be useful if the information is out of date!
We never want to think about what will happen if we die unexpectedly, but it’s important to make sure your loved ones are taken care of. Don’t delay in making a resource for them—you never know when they’re going to need it.