Now that you’ve moved into your new place, you might be wondering how you can protect it from the dangers of everyday life. Home insurance exists to protect your place from everything from floods to fires, but what about renters insurance? Most people don’t realize this kind of insurance even exists, and those who do usually see it as something they can’t afford or just unnecessary. However, renters insurance can be affordable and provide significant peace of mind, so take a moment to learn what you didn’t know about renters insurance.
Why you should have renters insurance
If you rent an apartment or house, your landlord’s insurance policy is unlikely to cover your belongings. Renters insurance can help protect yourself against damage to your property and/or liability for a disaster that damages other people’s property. A landlord may require renters insurance as a condition of renting a place; if you don’t have it, they may deduct money from your security deposit to cover potential damage. (There are exceptions, though: see below.) Here are five things most renters don’t know about their home insurance.
The cost of insuring a rental property differs significantly depending on location and structure—even in cities with high crime rates!
Things renter’s insurance covers
in most cases, renters insurance covers damage to personal belongings caused by fire, wind, theft and other insured perils. Renters insurance also provides liability coverage in case you are sued for injuries to other people or damage to their property—for example, if your dog bites someone on a walk. Unlike homeowners insurance, renters insurance does not cover earthquake or flood damage. Always read your policy carefully! It may be possible to purchase optional additional coverage. You might be surprised at what’s available and how affordable it can be. We have included some of these possibilities below:
You can purchase an endorsement that will pay for your legal defense if you are charged with a crime. This type of endorsement is normally very inexpensive but invaluable should you need it. All too often we hear of situations where individuals have gotten into legal difficulties because they did not speak up about illegal activity within their apartment buildings or even next door. Protect yourself from taking the blame for something you know nothing about!
The cost of renter’s insurance
A good renter’s insurance policy costs about a dollar per day and can be a life-saver. Having renter’s insurance doesn’t mean you’re not covered by your landlord’s insurance, it just means that your own personal property is insured separately in case of accidents and catastrophes. In addition to covering your stuff, renter’s insurance can also protect you from liability issues that could arise if someone visits your home and gets injured or their property is damaged while they are on your premises. For example, if your roommate decides to throw a party and trashes your home while intoxicated, you may have no recourse for repair or replacement costs with your landlord. Your renter’s insurance will pick up where your landlord leaves off. While there isn’t an absolute requirement for renters to carry some form of home insurance, most leases do require tenants to carry liability coverage which only kicks in if any damages occur as a result of negligence. You should check your lease before assuming you don’t need additional renters insurance protection beyond what your lease requires—you might find that one type or another works best for you.
Key things to know before signing up for renter’s insurance
renter’s insurance is simply a way to protect your property and belongings, just like homeowners insurance would do for you if you owned a home. If you rent an apartment or condo and don’t have renter’s insurance, you are putting yourself at risk of major financial loss in case of theft or damage. Even though your landlord might offer some coverage with their own policy, it is always best to be prepared with comprehensive renter’s insurance. This type of home insurance also covers many things that landlords typically leave out including personal liability protection. Without professional renter’s insurance, you could be sued by another tenant if someone was injured on your private property. Comprehensive renter’s insurance protects against these types of lawsuits, as well as burglary, vandalism, fire and natural disasters. These types of home insurance claims can quickly exceed thousands of dollars; having proper renters’ home insurance will help avoid financial stress.