Life is full of surprises, and not all of them are good. When you’re renting, a spot of bad luck at home can cause problems for you and your landlord. Floods, fires, and other calamities can be impossible to predict. While a security deposit will cover some issues beyond normal wear and tear, some problems are far more costly. If you’re found legally responsible for the damage, you could be on the hook to pay for it. And of course, damage to the unit is only the beginning. Burglary, personal property losses, and lawsuits are all serious concerns for renters. Landlords often invest in a policy of their own to protect their property; however, this doesn’t do much to help out a tenant. Luckily there are ways for renters to protect themselves as well. Renters insurance offers a safety net for all these scenarios and more.
At Rent Portland Homes by Darla Andrew, we’re invested in making sure our tenants feel secure in their new homes . We recently posted a video providing some useful insight for tenants interested in renters insurance. Matt Elliot, an agency owner with Farmers Insurance, talks over the protection that renters insurance provides. Check out our video here, and make sure you subscribe to our channel while you’re at it:
As Matt discusses in the video, there are a few things to keep in mind about renter’s insurance. By learning about them now, you can make sure to pick the policy that will work best for you.
Personal Liability Coverage
Personal liability covers any damages to property or people for which you might be held responsible for in court. This can include destruction to the unit more extensive than what the security deposit can cover, such as fire or water damage. If your landlord takes you to small claims court and the judge finds you at fault for the damage, you could owe thousands of dollars. Renters insurance offers a buffer against that financial hardship.
In addition to covering damage, a personal liability policy also covers medical bills if someone is injured in your rental. If your guest slips on a banana peel and the courts find your fruit disposal habits were negligent, personal liability coverage can help with the settlement.
These policies often begin at $100,000, as Matt mentions in the video. Many insurance plans can offer additional coverage up to $1 million. It all depends on your needs.
Personal Property Coverage
Where liability coverage insulates you from the effects of a lawsuit, property coverage looks out for your belongings. From smoke damage to volcanic eruption, personal property coverage spans a wide variety of mishaps and disasters. In a worst-case scenario, it will help cover the cost of replacing your damaged stuff.
Personal property coverage extends to almost everything, including furniture, electronics, and even small items like dishes. Conveniently, this coverage also extends to your belongings outside of the home. A personal policy can cover losses whether your stuff gets damaged while traveling, in a vehicle or storage unit, or within your home.
This coverage also extends to theft. Renters are nearly twice as likely to suffer a burglary than owners. The FBI reports that each burglary results in an average loss of $2,416. Without renters insurance, that loss comes directly out of a tenant’s pocket.
Personal property coverage comes standard with renters insurance. When choosing a policy, look for the right amount of coverage based on your possession’s assessed value.
Loss Of Use
So, let’s say a fire severely damages your apartment. A personal liability policy will cover you if you’re found legally responsible for the damages. A personal property policy will help you replace your stuff. And lastly, a loss of use policy will help you get back on your feet if you can no longer live in your home.
Serious damage or an extensive repair can mean you need to find a temporary place to stay. A loss of use policy will help cover the cost of your new lodging and can also cover additional living expenses, like the extra gas you’ll need to get to your new place of residence, or paying for more takeout because you no longer have a kitchen. The length of time or amount of money you’re covered for will vary with your policy.
Renters Insurance Keeps You Secure
Across the board, renters insurance gives you additional protection against the slings and arrows of life. If you’re trying to decide whether renters insurance is right for you, keep a few things in mind.
A landlord’s insurance policy will not cover many problems that affect tenants the most. Though many landlords have their own liability insurance, this does not apply to tenants. If a landlord is found responsible for an injury that occurs on the property, landlord insurance will cover it. If responsibility lies with the tenant, the burden is on them or their renter’s insurance to cover the damages. The same goes for stolen property; a landlord’s policy might protect their property, but not yours. In addition, landlords can even require you to have renters insurance before moving into your new place.
Having renters insurance is a great way to put your mind at ease. If you’re looking for a great rental in the Portland metro area, our team at Rent Portland Homes by Darla Andrew would love to find your dream place. With our expertise on your side, you’ll have even less to worry about. Give us a call or text us at (503) 515-3170 to hear more about our amazing properties, or send us a message through our contact page.