Why renters insurance is a bargain
For as little as $150 a year, you'll be covered. You can't afford not to have it.
Recently, I read an interview with a local man who had been displaced by an apartment fire. He wasn't sure where he would go once the temporary Red Cross housing ran out or how he would replace his belongings.
If he'd had renters insurance, he would have known exactly where to go: to a hotel paid for by the policy. He'd also have been able to shop for clothes, furniture and other items lost in the blaze.
Unless you own the place where you live, you need renters insurance. This kind of coverage is essential for anyone renting a home, apartment, dorm room or space in a senior living complex.
Policies cost as little as $150 a year. If you think you can't afford it, consider this: How would you afford to replace some or all of your belongings due to fire, flood or theft?
Covering your assets
When the agent asks about your belongings, pay attention -- these folks are skilled at helping us realize just how much we do have. A few examples of things that are expensive to replace: hobby or crafts supplies, business attire, makeup, tools, high-end toiletries, wine, sporting goods, holiday decorations and specialized clothes such as work boots or insulated coveralls.
Since limitations exist on certain items, such as jewelry, ask the agent about buying additional coverage. He or she should also:
- Explain the difference between replacement value and actual cash value of your belongings.
- Make sure the "loss of use" section of the policy is adequate if you live in an expensive area.
- Encourage you to document your belongings with a checklist or, ideally, with video or photos -- to be stored elsewhere, obviously. (The Insurance Information Institute has free inventory software and free storage at a site called KnowYourStuff.org.)
Renters insurance may also cover off-premises troubles: luggage lost by an airline, say, or the X-rays for the guy you hit with a wild pitch in a pickup softball game. Any time you suffer a loss, no matter how odd, you should call your agent to see if it's covered.
Even if money is tight, remember: You cannot afford to be without this coverage. Ask about senior, military or good-student discounts; if you have auto insurance, see if there's a discount for established customers. It may be possible to pay by the month, although that will likely cost you a little more.
Find that money somehow, lest you find yourself couch-surfing or, worse, in a shelter once your friends run out of patience.
More on MSN Money:
I had a water pipe freeze up in my rental unit and flooded the whole house.My renters had no insurance and had to live with thier parents.If they had insurance they could have been in a hotel room and had thier property replaced.From now on I will strongly encourage to my next tenants that they get insurance or add $15 or $20 bucks a month to the rent and get it for them.
RENTERS.............DONT GO WITHOUT!!!!!!!!!...It only makes sense
I always had renters insurance and now I have home owners. I did a partial home inventory and found I need to buy ore coverage and I did.
When I lived in a apartment the apartment a building done the street had a pipe burst and two of the renter lost a lot of belongs, but the third tenant had insurance and was covered. I would never be without insurance and if you don't think your belongings are expensive to try replace them.
House next to me burnt in 2007. Was there when it started and first person along with two other neighbors fighting it until the fire fighters got there. Used one of the 3 hoses (2 outside taps and 1 irrigation hose) to hit pieces of flaming debris that was attaching to my house.
Neither my roommate or myself had renters insurance at the time. The next week, I got renters insurance and have had it ever since.
Most of what was taken was irreplaceable - family heirloom jewelry, mostly. But all of it would have been covered had my policy been active. I could have absolutely used the money to replace the other items, like the TV.
I'm extremely thankful that it was a break in, and not something even more damaging like a fire. It was plenty bad enough but could have been so much worse. You don't think about how important that policy is until you actually need it.
* Renter's Insurance does not cover the peril of Flood on a standard policy, the way this article is presented is a bit mis-leading. The "journalist" should have actually consulted more than one agent or better yet, sought out a personal lines underwriter.
Why do journalist write so many articles under the assumption that they are somehow wiser and more cognizant of life's perils than the average reader? This article explains how dangerous life can be, and why, therefore, it's a good idea to have renter's insurance, rather than an intellectual or statistical justification for low rental premiums in comparison to other insurance as one would expect. Web writers would rather preach and teach than put any kind of work into researching a topic. As a result every article seems to be written for a 5th grade audience.
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