Renter’s insurance offers a way to protect both a renter’s personal property as well as protection from possible liability lawsuits. A lot of people pass it up, but it is affordable. For those purchasing it, there are ways to keep costs as low as possible.
Those who are renting are sometimes not aware that their landlord’s insurance will not cover any of their belongings in the case of theft, fire, natural disasters and other problems that can cause them to lose their personal possessions. For this reason, renter’s insurance is required in some localities.
In those cases in which it is not required, whether or not to take out renter’s insurance depends on what people have to protect, their financial situation and their attitudes about insurance. On one hand, insurance companies are in the business to make money, and most people will pay in more than they receive in claims. Therefore, it may be best to save and invest the money that would otherwise go to insurance. On the other hand, renter’s insurance is priced very reasonably when compared to most other types of insurance and provides both protections as well as peace of mind at a low cost. Furthermore, nobody wants to go through the struggle of having to replace all their personal belongings when some kind of disaster has struck, and some renter’s insurance also pays for temporary accommodation.
What it will cover
As with most types of insurance, there are a number of different options to choose from that will affect rates. What is covered by renter’s insurance depends on the type of insurance taken out.
Most people have personal belongings in mind when they purchase renter’s insurance. When the insurance is purchased, you will be asked how much coverage you would like for belongings from furniture and computers to clothes. There are two options in insuring the value of these things.
- Actual cash value: Is basically the used price of the item.
- Replacement value: This covers the cost of buying the item new. While this type of insurance costs more, many think it is worth it.
Keep in mind that many companies limit how much they will pay for expensive items such as jewelry. In these cases, if full coverage is desired, a special insurance “rider” will need to be purchased for extra coverage.
When deciding what to cover, itemize belongings by going through your home room by room giving everything an approximate value. The total will be a good estimation of the value of your possessions if you needed to repurchase everything.
When someone is injured in a home, and it is not due to a structural problem of the home, the renters can potentially be sued. Various levels of liability insurance can be purchased for protection in such cases.
It is also important to keep in mind that standard rental insurance does not cover flood and earthquake damage. Those who live in areas prone to these disasters may want to make sure they have this coverage.
Rental insurance discounts
The major ways to reduce rental insurance rates include the following. Whenever taking out insurance, make a point of asking about any discounts the company might offer.
- Non-smokers pose less of a fire hazard.
- Retired senior discounts are offered.
- Added security features, to include window locks, burglar alarms, smoke detectors and deadbolts can all reduce rates.
- Purchasing rental insurance from the same company that you already have another policy with may make you eligible for a multi-policy discount for bundled coverage.
Finding the best rental insurance rates
There are numerous websites that make checking out various companies for the best rates quick and easy. For example, http://www.netquote.com/ and other comparison sites will give quotes from a number of companies. Check with at least a couple of sites and look for the best overall plan.
Finding a reputable company
Since an insurance company is relied on in the worst of times, and insurance contracts are usually for the longer term, it is vital to find a reputable company. Before paying any premiums, go to sites NAIC and check the reputation of the company.
The company should not increase rates if the insured makes a claim.
Different types of property insurance to be aware of that you may want to take out include the following:
Additional living expenses: This insurance will cover living expenses after an insured loss. Examples of this coverage are hotel rooms, moving expenses and storage.
- Non-owned property: This is property on the renter’s premise but not owned by the renter.
- Property in vehicle: Will cover property that is stolen from a vehicle that is parked away from the insured dwelling.
- Property taken when traveling: Property can be covered anywhere in the world it is taken on trips.