Rental Home Insurance: What Every Renter Should Know

If you live in a home that you rent or lease, rental home insurance can protect your belongings and provide liability coverage for property damage.  The insurance is relatively inexpensive and offers peace of mind.  Many landlords have started requiring renters to carry renter's insurance in order to remove some of the possible liabilities associated with owning rental property.

What Rental Insurance Can Cover

Rental insurance protects your personal property against:

  • Theft - In addition to property stolen from your rental property, coverage can be extended to apply to items like bikes or laptops that are covered even when you're away from home.
  • Fire - Your policy can be designed to cover your personal property if it is damaged in a fire. The policy can also cover the cost of having to stay in a hotel if your dwelling becomes inhabitable.
  • Vandalism - Your rental policy can include coverage to protect you financially if your property is damaged by vandalism.
Rental insurance can also cover both a non-renter’s personal injuries and the damage to the property of another. Your policy will most likely contain exclusions for damages caused by things like flood and earthquake damage.

What Affects the Cost of Renters Insurance?

Your rental home insurance policy premium will depend on many factors. While insurance companies do take your credit rating and other personal factors into consideration, the biggest part of your premium price will depend on what coverage you choose. Read your policy closely; if there is specific coverage included that you know you will not need, talk to your agent about the savings you could obtain by removing the coverage. Don't be afraid to shop around or obtain quotes from other companies for comparison purposes.

Save Money on Your Rental Policy

You can save money on your rental policy by following these tips:
  • Obtain your rental insurance with the same company that insures your automobile to receive a multi-line discount on your insurance. This discount can reduce your premiums by 15%.
  • Shop for renter's insurance with your bank agent.  Commercial banks often have strategic relationships with certain insurance companies. You can get a discount on your insurance simply by having an account at one of these banks.
  • Reduce your risks: lock up your bike, engrave your identifying information into your laptop, iPod, and other valuables, and install deadbolts (with the homeowner's permission).
  • Improve your credit rating by paying off credit cards and cleaning up your credit report.
  • Choose only the coverage you need.

 

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