By Gregg Mashack, Vice President of Mortgage Lending, Marine Credit Union
When moving into a rented apartment or a duplex, you should take note of a checklist of items: damages by a previous tenant, locations of fire escapes, alarms and extinguishers. The building you are living in is insured by the landlord, but what about you and your belongings?
Consider two scenarios:
- You have guests over to your rented home. One of them trips up the stairs and breaks their wrist. You may have to help cover their medical bills.
- The apartment next to you has a fire. It damages your furniture, clothing, electronics, jewelry, collectibles, books, etc.; the loss from the possessions you invested in really starts to add up.
That’s where renters insurance comes in.
Renters insurance covers:
- If you or a guest are injured in your apartment or house
- Your belongings in case of theft or natural disaster
- Any accidental damage of the property (i.e. a fire caused by a grill on your deck)
You can even add additional living expenses coverage with most agents to cover any displacement caused by a property issue. There are different coverage plans you can typically design depending on your living situation and personal preferences.
Bonus tip: Know any clauses in your lease, and make sure your insurance covers those gaps. For example: if a leaky roof ruins your furniture, or a sewer backs up and damages your personal property, make sure your belongings will be insured.
So what’s the cost? Typically, renters insurance is relatively inexpensive. A moderate amount of renter’s insurance coverage per month would cost the average person about the same as their monthly Netflix account.
As you are thinking about your current living situation, whether you are moving into a first/new apartment or just want a better sense of security for your property, talk to your insurance agent about your options for renters insurance.