Moving into a brand new apartment often comes with a long to-do list. The good news is that if you tackle the list early on, the entire moving process will be a breeze. For many new apartment renters, getting your own place may not involve getting renters insurance, but the truth is that packing, moving, signing your lease, and possibly obtaining renters insurance is all a part of the process.
That said, not every apartment complex requires its tenants to have renters insurance. So, in the event that your lease does not say you are required to have renters insurance or a policy, you may be left wondering if you even need renters insurance. Thus, in order to help you tackle this portion of the program, let’s go over a few reasons why you need renters insurance.
For starters, accidents happen, and it is better to be covered than not. While living in your apartment complex, there are a whole host of things that could go wrong like your neighbor setting your common wall on fire or a friend coming over and injuring themselves while at your home. Since things like this are out of your control, having insurance will help protect your belongings as well as yourself and your guests.
A homeowner’s insurance policy does not protect you when you rent or lease a home
What’s more, if you are not renting an apartment, but you are leasing a townhouse/condo, a residence, or a duplex, then you need renters insurance. Of course, if you are renting a home of sorts, it is only natural to think that a homeowner’s insurance policy is what you need. However, this is simply not the case. Just like when you are renting an apartment, any place you are leasing actually requires renters insurance.
Landlord policies do not protect tenants
The reason having some form of insurance for you and your stuff is so important is because your landlord’s policy is not designed to protect you. In other words, your landlord does not have a vested interest in the protection of your property, so in the event that your belongings are damaged or stolen while in your apartment, it is really not their problem.
It costs more than you think to replace everything you own
Typically, you will come across people who believe that paying $12 or $20 a month is too expensive for a renters insurance policy. However, having to replace all of your belongings due to circumstances outside of your control will probably cost you more. Though it may be a hard pill to swallow, having most kinds of insurance (health, medical, renters/homeowners, car, etc.) is in your best interest.
You can get a discount on your auto insurance policy
Along those same lines, most insurance companies offer other forms of insurance. As a result, you can get your renters insurance through the same people you have your auto insurance policy with, which typically equals major savings for you. Thus, it is highly recommended that you do yourself a favor and bundle your policies to save a few bucks a month. Doing so may even cancel out the cost of having renters insurance if you are lucky.
Many landlords require proof of renters insurance before you move-in
As briefly touched upon, most landlords do require their tenants to have renters insurance. Moreover, many of these landlords actually will not let you move in until you show proof of having renters insurance. Clearly, on moving day, finding out that you cannot unpack your stuff in your unit until you secure renters insurance is not the goal.
Renters insurance is affordable
Thankfully, renters insurance is affordable or rather fairly inexpensive. Normally, most policies will cost less than $50 a month without bundling all your insurance. As mentioned above, when you get auto and renters insurance from the same company, the chances of you paying even less for your renters insurance policy increases exponentially. So, even if you are a student or have a fixed income, you can afford renters insurance.
Renters insurance policies are customizable
Besides being relatively inexpensive, Renters insurance is also customizable. This means you can pick and choose how much coverage you want, pick the right deductible for your needs, as well as what items are covered in terms of property. You can also make changes to your covered personal property, like adding your new computer and taking off an item you sold or no longer have. You can even customize your policy so that you are covered if you move again or if you travel a lot.
Losses can come in many forms
The nice thing about renters insurance is that it covers more than most people think. The reality is that losses come in many forms. As a result, most renters insurance covers not only theft but also things like water and fire damage, plus any damage done to your belongings by movers. A prime example is the fact that your policy often includes damage liability, i.e., if your kid accidentally breaks your neighbor’s window and now that window needs to be replaced, you do not have to scramble to come up with the money for repairs.
Renters insurance also covers bodily injury. If someone is hurt while at your apartment, then your insurance will cover their medical costs; however, there is a caveat here. Your policy will not protect you or your immediate family members in the event of injury in your unit.
Nevertheless, a renters insurance policy still has its obvious perks, so you may want to reconsider your stance on obtaining a policy. Note, though your policy may include more than ever before, it is still important to read over your insurance policy to know exactly what is covered and what is not.
Peace of mind
Another reason you need renters insurance is because it gives you peace of mind. Nowadays, computers, cell phones, TVs and even furniture cost a small fortune. Likewise, jewelry, family heirlooms, and other keepsakes may actually be irreplaceable. Thus, knowing your stuff is protected, and you are entitled to assistance in the event of an accident or another type of loss, even when you are out of town or on vacation, is honestly somewhat freeing.
Housemates or roommates can increase the risk of suffering a loss
Of course, you want to think the best of your housemates and roommates, but there is no denying that the more people you live with, the higher the risk is of your stuff being damaged or lost/stolen. Therefore, having a renters insurance policy can minimize that risk, while still affording the savings that come from having a roommate or housemate.
Finally, renters insurance offers you flexible coverage. For instance, if you lose your luggage at the airport, your bike gets stolen, or the family pet plays a little rough, it is covered. Thus, protection or coverage like that is worth a few bucks a month, wouldn’t you say?
Ultimately, you may not be legally required to have renters insurance, but we think it is pretty safe to say that you need it. Nevertheless, if you are still unsure about getting a policy to protect your belongings and more, then we suggest you research a policy or two. That said, there is a strong likelihood that your apartment complex will want proof of renters insurance, so you may just have to give in on this one.