Do You Need Renter's Insurance?
The short answer is YES! Most people know about homeowner’s insurance and the peace of mind it provides, but too often, individuals who are renting often don’t consider the need for renter’s insurance. It’s a bit of an unnerving idea, too, as stories of apartment complexes catching fire, storms causing severe property damage, and theft are not uncommon. Just as homeowner’s insurance protects you from such instances, renter’s insurance is available to do the same.
As you consider the benefits of renter’s insurance, you need to understand the two different types:
Content Insurance covers the replacement (usually the current market or depreciated value) of items that have been stolen, suffered environmental damage, or sometimes lost.
Liability Insurance helps protect the renter from paying for an accident that causes loss or damage to an individual or its property.
There are several obvious benefits to investing in a renter’s insurance policy, including:
1) Theft Protection – If you are the unfortunate victim of a break-in, your policy may help replace those stolen items. It is imperative to keep a personal property inventory checklist updated.
2) Storm Protection – If your property is damaged due to severe storms, your policy may help replace damaged items or pay for lodging and basic living expenses while your rental home is treated for repairs. Note that you should fully understand your policy. Flooding is typically not included and depending on your geographic location, certain types of storm damage may not be included, either.
3) Fire Protection – Similar to storm protection, your policy may help replace damaged items and pay for lodging and/or basic living expenses if your property needs to be treated for repair.
4) Caused Damage Protection – If you inadvertently cause damage to someone else’s property (i.e. a fire in your apartment spreads to a neighboring apartment), your policy may protect you from being responsible for repairs.
5) Visitor’s Injury Protection – If a visitor injures him or herself while on your rental property (i.e. slips and falls, suffers a dog bite, etc.), your policy may cover medical and legal costs, if necessary.
A typical policy will average $10 to $20 per month, depending on your needs, and by investing in a policy that includes both content and liability coverage, you’ll realize that the biggest benefit of all is peace of mind.