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Do I really need renters insurance coverage?

Cartoon depiction of woman sitting on a moving box with supplies stacked nearby.

You’ve followed your renters guide and it’s time to move in.

Your furniture is in place. Your utilities are hooked up, and your rental unit is starting to look like a home. Is renters insurance next on your to-do list? If you answered no, you’re not alone. According to the Independent Insurance Adjusters & Brokers of America (IIABA), almost two-thirds of residential lessees in the U.S. don’t carry renters insurance.

Yet, a renters policy is more important, accessible and competitively priced than you might think. And, in some cases, renters insurance is required by landlords. But renters are often unclear about what renters insurance is, what it covers, how much it costs, and how much they need. Don’t know if you need renters insurance? Ask yourself these questions:

  • How much are my belongings worth?
  • If they were lost in a fire or destroyed by an accident, could I buy them all back?
  • What would I do if someone were injured in my apartment and made a covered claim against me?
  • What if I were found legally responsible for damages to someone’s property?

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What does renters insurance cover?

What does renters insurance cover?

In short, renters insurance covers what you own. Most landlords’ insurance covers only the building and damages due to negligence. Coverage for some of the most common causes of property damage and loss, such as theft, vandalism and fire, is entirely up to you. Without renters insurance, you may have to bear the financial burden of a loss on your own. You could cover losses from:

Accidents

Impacts from vehicle, falling objects that hit your property, fire, smoke, water damage from plumbing or appliances

Weather impacts

Weight of snow, sleet, or ice; lightning, windstorms, hail, and water damage from freezing of plumbing systems

Malicious mischief

Vandalism, theft, riots or civil commotion, aircraft and vehicle damage

Loss of use

When your home is uninhabitable from a covered loss, this coverage provides additional living expenses for the shortest time needed to repair (or replace) the premises, or for the people in your household to settle in another home for up to 24 months.

Be sure you are protected against the unexpected with renters insurance. Get a free quote now.

Special coverage limits apply to certain types of personal property, including:

  • Boats and other watercraft equipment
  • Money, bank notes, and coins (including collections)
  • Property used or intended for use in a business
  • Securities, checks, travelers checks, gift cards, phone cards
  • Stamps, trading cards, and comic books (including collections)
  • Theft losses of jewelry, furs, firearms, silverware and goldware, rugs, tapestries, and wall hangings

Most renters’ belongings cost more than you think. In fact, the average person has over $35,000 worth of belongings that are probably not covered by a landlord’s policy. Take a moment to add up the approximate cost of your computer, television, stereo, furniture, jewelry and clothing.

Renters insurance also covers much more than just your personal property, like liability coverage. That means in the event of a covered loss, your insurer will help cover the costs if you’re held responsible for injuring another person or damaging another person’s property, including your landlord’s. Moreover, this coverage applies whether the incident occurred within your residence or elsewhere.

How much renters insurance do I need?

It depends how much you want, or need, covered. Think about the what ifs. Do you require more than someone else? Do you want additional coverage?

Assess your liability

Your renters policy’s liability coverage may protect you if someone injures themselves in your home. It may also protect you in case you or a family member causes damage to others’ property. Some policies will pay for legal fees and medical bills for covered claims in addition to settlement costs. The typical renters insurance policy offers $100,000 in liability coverage. For renters, this amount is often enough. However, if you have company over often to your home, or your stuff is worth more than that, you should consider an amount of insurance equal to at least the total value of your assets.

What’s not covered by renters insurance? 1

Keep in mind that your policy will exclude certain perils:

  • Property damage to your buildings, roof, and siding (these are covered by your landlord)
  • Water damage caused by flooding or underground water
  • Damage caused by earth movements, such as earthquakes and landslides, or caused by nuclear hazard.

A renters insurance policy may not cover all you need covered. You might want to consider additional policies. We offer numerous options for an additional premium.

Pet medical insurance

Want to ensure your cat or dog is insured? You could add pet medical insurance. Coverage varies by state.

Optional renters insurance coverages

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1 All property coverages are subject to the Losses Not Insured provision of the policy. Please refer to the policy for descriptions of losses insured and not insured.

State Farm Fire and Casualty Company
Bloomington, IL

State Farm General Insurance Company
Bloomington, IL

State Farm Florida Insurance Company
Winter Haven, FL

State Farm Lloyds
Richardson, TX