With the wave of foreclosures and job losses that have swept our country, more and more people are finding themselves back in the rental market. Whether they are renting houses, condominiums, apartments, or mobile homes, rental insurance is often overlooked. Those who have a child away at college, may also want to consider helping the student get a rental insurance policy.
Many people assume that since they are renting and don’t own the property, the landlord’s insurance will cover everything in the event of a disaster or accident. But, to the surprise of many, it is very rare that a landlord’s insurance policy will cover renters’ losses. A landlord’s insurance policy typically covers only damage to the actual building; not the renter’s possessions. The only time a renter’s possessions and contents are usually protected is when they have purchased renter’s insurance. Most renter’s policies can be purchased at the same place where a homeowner’s policy is purchased for a home. A person’s automobile insurance company may also offer renter insurance.
Renter insurance is generally limited to covering only the renter’s possessions. It’s similar to homeowner’s insurance except that it does not provide coverage for damage done to the actual rental building. In addition to possibly offering the renter some protection in the event they become personally liable for an incident, renter’s insurance will also generally cover damage done to electronics, clothes, furniture, sports equipment, appliances, jewelry, and collectibles.
In addition to the above, renter’s insurance will also typically cover certain types of disasters, such as fire or lightning, windstorm or hail, explosion, riot or civil commotion, aircraft, vehicles, smoke, vandalism or malicious mischief, theft, damage by glass or safety-glazing material that is part of a building, volcanic eruption, falling objects, weight of ice, snow, or sleet, water-related damage from home utilities, and electrical surge damage. Importantly, renter’s insurance doesn’t usually cover flood damage or damage caused by earthquakes. So, those people who live in areas where these risks exist, may want to consider a separate policy for those risks.
One last important thing to keep in mind is that when purchasing a renter’s insurance policy, buyers should pay close attention to whether they are buying “actual value” coverage or “replacement value” coverage. For example, with an “actual value” policy where the renter purchased a TV for $500 over three years ago, and it was subsequently destroyed, the insurance company is only going to pay the cost of what that TV is worth at the time it was damaged. The chances are that it will not be worth the $500 paid for it and there will probably not be enough insurance money to replace it with a comparable TV.
Contact us today for a free legal consultation with an experienced attorney.
Fields marked *may be required for submission.
If you would like to subscribe to the Jere Beasley Report digital edition, simply visit our Subscriptions page and provide the necessary information or call us at 800-898-2034.
Attorney Advertising - Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.