If you rent an apartment or house from someone, that person’s insurance will only cover the building that he or she owns. If you want to protect your own personal belongings, you need to carry renters insurance. Those who own a property and rent it out to others carry a different type of insurance, as do those who live in a property they own themselves.
What is it?
A renters insurance policy specifically covers the personal property of someone who lives in a rented space. A renters policy offers no coverage for the physical building in which you live, only your personal possessions, such as furniture and clothing. Most renters policies also offer personal liability protection.
How does it work?
Renters coverage works much like any other property/casualty insurance coverage. If you have a covered event, such as weather or fire damage, you must contact your insurer to initiate a claim. The insurance company will then verify that the cause of the damage is covered by your policy and, if so, pay you the value of your insured possessions up to your policy’s limits. Most renters policies also pay for you to live elsewhere if your rented space is unliveable.
Types of policies
Renters policies are very similar in what they do and don’t cover. Some policies may offer endorsements or riders allowing you to gain additional coverage for an additional premium, such as coverage for expensive items like jewelry or art.
The major benefit of have a renters policy is that you have protection for your possessions, something your landlord’s insurance more than likely will not do. Another benefit is that renters insurance is relatively inexpensive to have, especially considering the level of coverage you get. Most people can get $20,000 to $25,000 of coverage for just a couple hundred dollars a year. An additional benefit is the personal liability coverage such a policy offers, which protects you in case someone should be hurt in your dwelling.