So you rented an apartment, and now you need some renter’s insurance. Today I’ll help you with the renter’s insurance, go over what the policy entails, and help you shop for a policy.
A lot of people believe that the landlord’s policy is going to cover them if there’s a fire. Well, the landlord’s policy does not cover any of the tenant’s personal property. If you want coverage for that, you’re going to need to get a renter’s policy. A renter’s policy is relatively easy to get, and it’s relatively inexpensive.
There’s a few things you want to be aware of. First of all, you want to figure out how much coverage you need. And if you talk with an independent agent, they can help you decide that as well. You want to go through an inventory list. Do you own the appliances there? Do you own a washer and dryer? Do you have children? Do we need to account for all their clothing and toys and things like that? And then all your household items.
So make a list and figure out what it may cost if you have to replace everything. Don’t figure out what it’s worth at today’s dollars. If you had to go out and buy everything new tomorrow, that’s the figure that you’re going to want to insure for, and that’s called replacement coverage. So you want to look for a policy that has replacement coverage, and you want to make sure that you have enough coverage so you can replace all your items.
Renter’s policy also includes a couple of other coverages. Loss-of-use coverage is going to be included in most renter’s policies. That’s going to cover you for, let’s say there’s a fire at the building that you’re living in and you have to live somewhere else temporarily until that place is repaired. Loss-of-use coverage on your renter’s policy will typically pick up those additional costs you have to live somewhere else temporarily.
Also, liability coverage. A liability coverage is very important on a renter’s policy. We typically recommend carrying $300,000 or $500,000 of coverage. This protects you in case somebody gets injured on the premises.
Again, a lot of renter’s aren’t aware that they can be sued if someone’s injured on the premises. Now, let’s say someone gets injured inside your unit, or you left something outside your unit where somebody got injured, tripped and fell, something like that. You can be sued, as well as the landlord. So keep in mind, you do want to carry liability coverage, and we recommend carrying $300,000 or $500,000 on a typical renter’s policy. Again, that’s usually one of the coverages that is included, and it’s not expensive.
And then you also want to be aware, there are some limitations on renter’s policies, things like jewelry coverage, collectibles, guns. If you have a lot of these items, you want to talk to your independent agent and look at scheduling these items separately, because you may need additional coverage that the primary policy may not be adequate for.
So, again, the cost on the renter’s policy. A typical renter’s policy might run anywhere from $100, $150, $200 a year, depending on the coverage that you need. That would be a typical policy. We recommend grouping it together with your auto insurance, too, so you get some additional discounts. That is very important because, when you do a package, they’ll give you discounts on not only the renter’s insurance but also on the auto insurance.
I’m Ron Philleo with Philleo Agency Insurance, and make sure to check out our other videos.