If you rent an apartment or a house, your landlord is only responsible for the insurance that covers the cost of repairing the building if there is a fire or other disaster. To financially protect yourself and your belongings you will need your own coverage, known as renters or tenants insurance. No matter where you live, renters insurance is economical and worthwhile. It helps you protect your belongings. Insurance rates vary depending on the amount of coverage and additional features. Renters Insurance offers three types of financial protection:
Coverage for Personal Possessions
Additional Living Expenses
Here is the checklist that can help you choose the right coverage when you are shopping around for renters insurance or discussing your needs with an insurance professional :
A. Coverage for Personal Possessions
How much insurance should I buy?
Always make sure that you are well insured and protected in the event of burglary, fire or other covered disasters. The best way to do this is to determine the value of all your personal possessions by creating a home inventory (a detailed list of all of your belongings along with their estimated value).
Should I choose replacement cost or actual cash value coverage?
Your actual cash value policies include a deduction for depreciation. And replacement cost coverage will cost more but can be well worth the extra expense when the time comes to replace your belongings.
Types of disasters that are covered?
Renters insurance protects you against losses from fire or smoke, lightning, vandalism, theft, explosion, windstorm and certain types of water damage (including floods from the running water when tap is left open by the tenant upstairs or from a burst pipe). Most of the renters insurance policies, do not cover floods or earthquakes. For flood coverage you need to consult the National Flood Insurance Program and a few private insurers. And earthquake insurance comes as a separate policy or have it added as an “endorsement” to your renters policy, depending on where you live.
Am I covered if I am traveling or away from home?
Most of the renter’s policies include called-off premises coverage. It means that belongings that are outside of your home are covered against the same disasters listed in your policy. For example, property stolen from your car or a hotel room while you’re traveling would be protected.
B. Liability Protection
Do I have enough liability insurance?
Renters insurance protects you against lawsuits for bodily injury or property damage done by you, your family members and even your pets. This coverage pays for both the cost of defending you in court and court awards up to the limit of your policy. Thus, it’s important to ensure the amount of liability coverage provided by your policy is sufficient to protect your assets. Always remember that your renters policy should also include no-fault medical coverage as part of the liability protection.
What is the need for an umbrella liability policy?
Incase you decide for a larger amount of liability protection, consider purchasing a personal umbrella liability policy. An umbrella policy comes into play when you reach the limit on the underlying liability coverage provided by your renters or auto policy. It will also cover you for things such as libel and slander.
Many insurance companies offer several types of discounts, but these can vary widely by company and by state, so review your options carefully. In case you need Small Business Insurance California, Renters Insurance California, or Renters Insurance San Diego the insurance experts and professionals can provide you with the right coverage at a price that fits your budget.