By: Sharon Aron Baron
A fire breaks out and all of your personal possessions are destroyed in your home. Thankfully, everyone is safe and your insurance company will reimburse you for your loss. For renters that forgo purchasing insurance, they will lose everything.
If you have a home mortgage, the bank requires proof of insurance to cover not only the home, but the contents inside of it in case the unthinkable happens like a fire. Not only that, but it will reimburse living expenses should your home become uninhabitable. Not so on a rental. By not insuring your family’s possessions, you are playing Russian roulette in the chance a catastrophic event occurs.
Renter’s insurance is relatively inexpensive, however, rates depend on the individual’s insurance history, credit, the location of the property and the amount of property they need covered, said Stacy Kagan with Allstate Insurance in Coral Springs who said that it’s just as important to have renter’s insurance as it is to have homeowner’s insurance.
“What rental insurance does is protect everything you need and use on a daily basis. From your clothing, to your furniture, bedding, shoes, purses – anything you use that you touch everyday.”
If your home burns to the ground, or even the apartment near you, Kagan said that depending on the company, renter’s insurance can help get you into the next rental by helping to subsidize the move.
Renter’s insurance can also protect homeowners from theft, even if items are stolen from inside of their cars.
According to ValuePenguin, South Florida has one of the most affordable renter’s insurance rates in the State. They gathered quotes for a sample property, and found the average annual renters insurance premium for the GEICO policy in their study was $341. This was based on quotes for a 1,000-square-foot residence with at least $25,000 in personal property coverage and $100,000 in liability coverage. They then collected quotes for that sample residence from GEICO, the lone major carrier that offered quotes online.
Kagan highly recommends flood insurance for renters that live on the ground floor of an apartment or a one story home.
“If there is a storm or hurricane and everything is damaged because of standing water, renter’s insurance will not cover that,” said Kagan.
Another reason to have renter’s insurance is liability, she said. If someone is injured on your property and requires medical care, you will be covered from liability and that’s why she emphasizes that homeowners and landlords that rent their properties require in the lease that their tenants get renter’s insurance to make sure they are covered.