The man behind a new app which allows people to create a digital record of their possessions says the idea came from both his head and his heart.

James Lee, a 36-yea- old Australian Westpac employee, says he came up with beContento after taking a closer look at his life.

"I wanted to be more content with life," he said.

Lee wanted to take note of what he did have rather than being pulled into a culture which sometimes focused on what he didn't have.


At the same time through his work in the insurance industry at the bank, he saw the pain people could go through after a loss when they didn't have a record of what they owned.

So Lee pitched his idea to his employer at a brainstorming session and Westpac took it up and will now trial the free app in New Zealand.

The app allows users to catalogue and photograph their possessions and receipts and store it online so if the items are lost, stolen or damaged they can be more easily claimed for through insurance.

The information is held in the cloud, meaning users can retrieve it even if their phone is replaced, damaged or stolen.

Users don't have to be Westpac customers and the bank says it won't use the details of those who sign up to sell insurance to, without their consent.

Lee has even had a chance to test it out himself after a trip to Auckland to help work on the app saw him become the target of a thief.

"I was sitting in Queen's Arcade and someone stole my laptop."

While he says having a digital record of items is no guarantee that an insurance payout will go ahead having a photo and copy of the receipt or warranty does help.

He also suggests taking a selfie with the item.

Lee says having a catalogue of what you own can also help people figure out how much contents insurance they might need and whether they are over or under-insurer and have the right type of cover.

One example of that was someone owning a $10k bike believing their $50k contents insurance would cover it when the policy may contain a cap of $1k for bikes.

Lewis Billinghurst, head of ventures at Westpac New Zealand, said he was excited to bring James' visions and ideas to life.

"The feedback we've received from our testing groups has been very positive, especially those who have experienced theft or robbery."

beContento is available for free in New Zealand on iPhone and Android devices.