For Rent

An Introduction to Renters Insurance

March 26, 2020 | Tower Hill Insurance

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Do you live in a rental house, townhome or apartment? Do you have a recent graduate that just moved into their first apartment? If so, renters insurance will protect your possessions including furniture, electronics, clothing and household items and provide all-important liability coverage.

Most people assume that, if you’re renting a house or apartment, your landlord is financially responsible when fire, theft, or other catastrophe damages your belongings. However, while your landlord may have insurance for the building you occupy, it’s very unlikely the landlord’s policy covers your personal belongings or pays for your living expenses while your home is being repaired. That’s where renters insurance comes in.

What renters insurance covers

Renters insurance offers two basic types of coverage:

    1. Personal Possessions
      Personal Possessions coverage typically protects your personal belongings against damage from fire, smoke, lightning, vandalism, theft, explosion, windstorm, water, and other disasters listed in the policy. Floods and earthquakes are not usually covered. There are supplemental policies, such as flood insurance, available to cover these perils.
    2. Liability
      Standard renters insurance policies usually provide some level of liability protection against lawsuits for injuries to other people or property. For instance, if your child or pet accidentally ruins an expensive vase in your neighbor’s home, you’ll be covered. However, if your child or pet ruins an expensive vase in your home, you will not be covered.

Take inventory of your belongings

To determine how much renters insurance coverage you need, it’s essential to know the value of all your personal possessions, including furniture, clothing, electronics, appliances, kitchen utensils and even linens such as towels and bedding. In other words, if your home were to burn down, you should have enough coverage (minus the deductible) to replace all of your possessions. The easiest way to figure out how much insurance coverage to buy is to create a home inventory – a detailed list of all your personal possessions and their estimated value. An up-to-date home inventory will also make filing an insurance claim faster and easier. Fortunately, there are plenty of home inventory applications from which to choose.

How to choose the right coverage

Renters insurance is designed to cover the cost of replacing your belongings in the event of an accident, theft, or natural disaster, and the amount of coverage you’ll need depends on several factors. As mentioned earlier, take a home inventory of your belongings to estimate the value of them – you might be shocked by how much it’s all worth! In addition, you’ll need to decide how much liability coverage you should have. This amount ranges anywhere from $100,000 to $500,000, so we strongly recommend that you discuss your specific liability coverage needs with a licensed insurance agent.

Renters insurance can be surprisingly affordable, and in many cases renters insurance is required by landlords. Check out our Renters Insurance Quote tool to get an instant quote and contact a Tower Hill agent today!