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Your Guide to Renters Insurance

For some people, renters insurance might seem like an unnecessary expense. After all, if you don’t own your home, why spend the extra money each month?

The truth is, there are plenty of reasons why you should make renters insurance a priority. If you want protection in the face of a natural disaster, robbery, or temporary displacement from your home, renters insurance is a critical way to protect not only your possessions, but your financial security, too. Here is everything you need to know about renters insurance—how it works, what it covers (and doesn’t), and what it typically costs.

What Is Renters Insurance?

Renters insurance is a surprisingly affordable way to protect your personal belongings when you’re living in an apartment, house, or condo that you don’t own. It’s your guarantee that no matter what happens—whether a neighbor falls asleep with a lit cigarette and causes a fire, or someone breaks into your home—all of your personal property will be covered. 

You might not think renters insurance is worth it if you’ll only be renting for a short time or if you don’t own many possessions of great value. But because renters insurance is so affordable, it makes much more financial sense to invest in a policy rather than replacing everything you own in the event of a disaster.

What Does Renters Insurance Cover?

For renters, disaster comes in many forms. It can be weather-related damage, vandalism, or even a lawsuit from someone who was injured while in your home. Fortunately, renters insurance has got you covered throughout any of those situations. 

Most renters insurance policies cover three basic components: personal possessions, liability, and additional living expenses. Here’s an up-close look at what each of those cover:

What Does Renters Insurance Cost?

Because it only covers what’s inside your home, rather than the structure itself, renters insurance is one of the most affordable types of insurance you can buy.

According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, an average renters insurance policy costs between $15 and $30 a month. The specific amount you will be required to pay will depend on where you live, as well as your coverage and deductible amounts, but an insurance agent will be able to provide several options with a range of coverage and premiums to best suit your needs. 

Curious about how you can save on your monthly premium? Most insurance companies offer discounts if you bundle your renters insurance with other policies, such as your auto insurance. And if you’re looking to lower the cost of your rate even more, you can consider raising your deductible (the amount you’re required to pay before an insurer will cover any expenses). After all, the higher your deductible, the cheaper your premium. However, when you’re choosing a deductible amount, consider how much you’ll be able to pay out of pocket in the event of an emergency. Remember, you’ll pay the deductible each time you file a claim, and your rate is likely to increase after each claim, so weigh this decision carefully.

What Doesn’t Renters Insurance Cover?

Despite the fact that renters insurance is a wise financial move that offers peace of mind, it’s important to know that it doesn’t cover everything. Here’s what you need to know:

Certain natural disasters: Do you live in an area that’s prone to floods, earthquakes, or sinkholes? Renters insurance usually will not cover damage of your personal property during these natural disasters. 

Pest damage: If you’ve got an infestation of rodents and bugs, they can really do a number on your personal property.  Unfortunately, renters insurance will not cover any damage done by these creatures, or services from an exterminator.

Undocumented items: When you file an insurance claim, you’ll be asked to provide proof of your property. Therefore, if you can’t prove the value of your items (or that you own them), with photos and/or receipts, they may not be covered.

Is Renters Insurance Mandatory by Law?

Renters insurance is not legally required. However, some landlords may require proof of renters insurance before you sign a lease, or within a certain time period. 

Regardless of your landlord’s insurance rules, renters insurance just makes sense. After all, the value of the average renter’s belongings begins at $20,000. In the event of a disaster or home theft, could you cover the costs of replacing all your possessions? 

Would you be able to afford the expenses of being displaced, or the medical bills for someone injured in your home? Any of these situations could be financially devastating—which is why the low rates of renters insurance make it an affordable and smart investment.

Low Rates for Renters Insurance Are Just a Click Away

Now that you know how important renters insurance is for your financial future, it’s time to get covered. We’re here to make that process as quick and simple as possible. Get an immediate  online insurance quote and find out how much you can save on renters insurance every month.

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