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Why Do I Need Renters Insurance?

Acquiring renters insurance is one of the most overlooked and undervalued aspects of renting a property. Some renters don’t believe they need to purchase coverage, while others simply don’t know it exists. Most of the time people don’t realize they need renters insurance until they have experienced a loss or damage.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, only 30 percent of renters are covered by renters insurance. In the unfortunate event that a fire or theft occurs, most renters will not be financially protected against the damage.

What does renters insurance cover?

Renters insurance covers damage and loss of personal property. Depending upon the policy you select, the coverage may vary. However, renters insurance policies can cover losses due to theft, vandalism, hail, smoke, fire, windstorms, lightning and injury to a visitor. In addition, some policies will cover the expenses incurred if you have to temporarily live in another place due to covered loss.

Does my landlord’s insurance protect my personal property?

Unfortunately, your landlord’s insurance policy covers only the structural damages that affect the rental property. The landlord’s insurance will not cover the replacement cost of your personal possessions. By obtaining a renter’s insurance policy, you can get a policy that will insure your personal possessions against loss and damage.

Do I really need renters insurance if I do not own valuable items?

Yes. You need renters insurance to protect you against loss that occurs while renting any type of property such as a house, an apartment, co-op or a condominium. Think about it this way: If a thief breaks into your home and steals your possessions, you will be solely responsible for replacing all of your items. Replacing clothing, computers, furniture, cell phones and other personal items can be expensive, even if they weren’t top quality to begin with.

You really don’t know how valuable your items are until you have to pay to replace them. It is a wise choice to get renters insurance in case loss or damage happens to you.

How much does renters insurance cost?

Renters insurance is relatively inexpensive when you compare it to the costs associated with replacing damaged or stolen personal property. Renters insurance can cost between $15 and $30 per month depending upon the policy coverage and insurance carrier. In a year, you can expect to pay up to $360 per year. That’s not a lot of money to pay for the peace of mind the coverage provides.

What items are excluded from coverage?

Although a renters insurance policies cover personal property, liability due to injury and additional living expenses, there are some items that are excluded from coverage.
Most rental insurance does not cover:

• Animals (including pets of all kinds), fish or birds
• Landscaping of any kind, trees, plants, shrubs or lawns
• Land motor vehicles, motorized vehicles or machines or aircrafts
• Credit/debit cards. Some policies allow customers to purchase supplemental coverage for these items.
• Illegal items and contraband
• Property of a roommate, boarder, tenant or other resident who is not insured by the policy

It is important to note that exclusions vary according to the policy coverage and carrier.

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